National Library Extension

Project info


Competition Entry


Serbian National Library building, municipality of Vračar, Belgrade, Serbia


Serbian National Library


21.614 m2 gross


3.4 million $


Schematic Design




Ilja Mikitišin, Miljan Salata, Nemanja Dačić, Igor Mikitišin

The spatial layout of the National Library of Serbia together with the temple of Saint Sava and the Saint Sava Plateau already offers us a basic conceptual starting point and definition of the context as "Belgrade Agora" which represents a reaffirmation of the idea of the architect M. Mitrović and the rethinking of the existing Plateau, by establishing an adequate urbanistic and semantic relationship between the existing elements (temple, library, plateau and park) with the terrain. Karađorđev Park, as an immediate neighbor in the intervention zone, represents an important spatial entity recognized as a belonging part and a logical extension of the Saint Sava Plateau

This park not only anchors the location in question as one of the main factors of a broader urban plan, but also "offers" itself as a natural connection without disrupting relations with other parts of the Saint Sava Plateau (public parking garage in Skerlićeva and access to the Saint Sava temple). Conceptual setting for distributing the "pressure" of public space towards the immediate surroundings of Karađorđev Park led to creation of a new Park Plateau in front of the NBS by synthesizing the city and nature as the main factors that define the new designed architecture. Defining the above-ground volume of the Multifunctional Space as a Plinth of the Ionic column in Ancient Greek architecture monuments, which urbanistically behaves as a pedestal of the city view with the Temple and the National Library in the background.

The term SYNTHESIS in the theoretical part of the project means the reinterpretation and critical review of spatial, sociological, historical, semantic, cultural and political relations at the level of the urban whole, especially in relations below:

- Addition - ARCHITECTURE - City

- Agora – "AGORA IN THE FOREST" - Forest

- Library (Science) - NEW MULTIFUNCTION SPACE - Temple (Religion)

- Yugoslavia - NATIONAL LIBRARY - Serbia

- Saint Sava Plateau – NEW PARK - Karađorđev Park

- Connection - ROOF - Interruption

- Memory - IDENTITY - Anticipation

- Below – PLINTH - Above


- Contemplation - MODERN CITY LIBRARY - Interaction

- Program - SEMANTICS – Meaning

The design methodology was directed towards the landscape approach in solving the roof plane as well as the rich horticultural arrangement of the parterre, whereby the Karađorđev park is "transferred" to the neighboring side, the zone of competitive coverage. The space of the newly designed Roof functions emphasizes the connection between the Karađorđe Park and the Saint Sava Plateau, while at the same time it tends to keep visitors and make a break through everyday movement directions.

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