Vaga Lume Modular Library
Amazon Basin, Brazil

1,970 SF (TYPE 1&2) • 3,089 SF (TYPE 3)

The Vaga Lume Association aims to promote the social transformation of small communities located along the rivers of the Amazon basin. Their mission is to develop the intellectual and academic coastal communities with the distribution of a module library. The basic kit contains a wooden bookcase, 150 children’s books, a treadmill and a panel of canvas for the exhibition of the books. The project begins with the bookcase that becomes the basic module for the building construction.

The basic module consists of a “frame” 80 cm x 110 cm that is formed by four parts with pre-cut slots to easy mounting. Once assembled, these frames are “stuffed” to become the building blocks of the library, with a pivoting window, a window shade or a shelf. This system allows for the use of native materials to seal and finish the building. Paxiúba, braided straw, mats, nets, local grasses and wood may be used as “fillings” of these frames. Because of the modulation of the building system, the enclosed spaces can be adapted according to local needs in terms of cost, lighting, ventilation, size and seal.

The roof appears as an independent element of the volume built, being physically detached from it and thus providing better environmental comfort, with more formal freedom. The building is fully suspended by a wooden deck in order to protect it from the humid ground. Avoiding contact with the ground by using surface footings will prevent moisture transition points that make the wood vulnerable. The project will also include sustainable systems with simple use and maintenance, such as solar panels, rainwater catchment and bio septic tanks. Although the project is small in terms of literal space, in the future the goal is for it to serve as a laboratory for community growth.

Find out more about the Vagalume project at Inhabitat.