Reimar Herbst / Angelika Kunkler
University and University of Applied Sciences Library
best architects 17
Dresden / Germany
The compact volume of the library is a sculpturally conceived monolith. With its imposing presence, it assumes the role of entryway to the university campus and as such is part of the master plan for the expansion of the campus on grounds where military barracks once stood. The edges of the building help to define the urban space and claim it as a setting for the university. The entrances therefore lead in from the two sides of the building facing the city into the library foyer. Like a flowing interior landscape, the foyer then opens onto the exterior spaces on the other side, linking the campus with the urban neighbourhood. The spatial zoning in flexibly interrelated building blocks allows for two organisationally independent libraries in one structure. All areas of the library open to inner garden courtyards with three-storey reading terraces rising at their front sides. The stairwells are conceived as rooms in their own right, inviting users to linger. Open and closed user areas allow either focused or more communicative work in a variety of atmospheres. The façade of waterstruck brick with beige, grey and brown nuances follows the typology of bookshelves, books, and the lines of text within them. The vertical façade openings were filled accordingly: brick surrounds with multiple setbacks vary the breadths of the deep windows according to the direction they face and their use. The necessary sun protection is thus ensured through structural means.