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New York, NY | 2,000 SF | Sustainable Design Features | Educational




central park east before.jpg
central park east before 2.jpg

Photographs by APT

The Jackie Robinson School Campus in Spanish Harlem is famous for its graffiti schoolyard, where for more than 30 years, street artists from around the world have been decorating the school’s yard walls with colorful graffiti murals.


Located in the Jackie Robinson School Campus in Spanish Harlem, this library serves high school and middle school students.

When creating our design, we took into consideration the close by Jackie Robinson School's "Graffiti Hall of Fame", an unofficial outdoor graffiti gallery on the school yard's concrete walls created by practicing artists. Drawing inspiration from the colorful work, we decided to incorporate bold colors and strong graphics in the new library’s design while also meeting the project's goals of creating reconfigurable spaces.


APT introduced a bright orange ribbon of alcove along the library's interior wall, surmounted by a custom designed graphic of favorite quotes chosen by the school. The orange alcove is the computer area, while the main space, flooded by natural light, is divided with low furniture elements that provide classroom and lounge areas. The sequence of spaces is articulated by modular and movable furniture that allows flexibility of use for composing study, meeting and discussion areas for students, teachers, and parents alike.


The library’s materials and technologies, such as shades that reduce glare but allow penetration of natural light, as well as energy efficient light fixtures, responded to the latest environmental standards and followed specific environmental requirements developed with the client.


  • 2012 Architzer "M13 Central Park East Library"

  • 2012 CultureNOW "M13 Central Park East Library"

This project is part of Atelier Pagnamenta Torriani’s architectural acupuncture interventions in NYC: a transformative series of public school libraries that are expanding their educational purpose by rebuilding communities through culture.

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