chapter  7
Programmes and people: the changing library programme
Pages 10

Though libraries in many towns and cities are stylistically different, the programme has remained fairly common. Today's designs do, however, have to emphasise flexibility, given the rapidly changing material forms and modes of consumption which contemporary culture is developing. Hence the rise of the open-plan, non-segmented library floor plan. Even so, each individual library project will be different, responding to a different set of client needs, projections, site conditions, townscape and historical context. Thus the design will need to be wholly interwoven with the programme in an iterative, self-correcting process. As architect Denise Scott Brown acutely observed in a letter regarding the competition to design a new library in Denver in 1990:

It should not be thought that the creation of a building is a linear process: programming, design, documentation, construction. Design informs program as much as program informs design. Eliminate that interaction and the question may never catch up with the answer.