Snøhetta wins competition for the Theodore Roosevelt Library
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Snøhetta wins competition for the design of the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library

Snøhetta

Snøhetta wins competition for the Theodore Roosevelt Library

Snøhetta is the winning studio in the competition to design the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library in Medora, North Dakota.

The architectural competition for the new Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library attracted the participation of forty firms, three of which reached the final selection stage: Snøhetta, Studio Gang, and Henning Larsen.

The three finalists traveled to the site to survey it and meet with the local community, stakeholders, and residents. The Snøhetta team was better able to interpret the elements at its disposal, submitting a project that went beyond the material dimension to offer a journey through different settings, created by separate pavilions that serve as the spaces for the library’s different activities. The design reflects the ideas of United States president Theodore Roosevelt, to whom the library is dedicated, in a material form inspired by the commitment to the landscape, environmental protection, and civic involvement that dominated the president’s life.

“When designing a new project, we think about how we can give more to the site or community than is initially asked of us,” said Craig Dykers. “We integrated the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library into the landscape of the North Dakota Badlands. We still have much to learn about President Roosevelt, and we’re looking forward to working with the Medora community and the broader project team to translate this knowledge into an immersive place to learn about T.R.’s life and legacy.”

The location of the building reflects one of Roosevelt’s greatest legacies, namely the conservation of national parks. The library doesn’t impose itself on the existing landscape and encourages visitors to take paths that will lead them to experience the dialogue between nature and architecture.

The materials used to build the complex will reflect the conservation ethic for which Roosevelt is remembered. In tune with the local ecosystem, the materials will all be recyclable and sourced locally. Advanced energy systems will set new standards for sustainability in the area.

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