Research & Education

Learning and study building University of Göttingen

Under the motto "free space for new thinking", the study center at the University of Göttingen provides over 600 work areas for students. Single, double and group work areas are offered in the rooms conceived for the users. Each student has the option of booking the required room for themselves and their fellow students, free of charge.

Urban planning
The route from the university library to the central canteen is designed as a main thoroughfare, lined with individual buildings that form plazas on the campus via projections and recesses. Incorporating this principle, the new learning and study center constitutes a counterpart to the existing courtyard between the central lecture-theater building and the central canteen.
As a result, the campus is extended, but is also brought to a natural conclusion at this point.

The learning and study center forms a neighborhood-like setting for students, which is open towards the campus, but has a language that demonstrates independence. In keeping with traditional student life, community plays a major role. The central interior courtyard is defined by the communal spaces' expressive overhangs – the break areas. The rooms with work areas, the individual places of retreat, are calmly arranged along the facade. Every workroom has one or more windows, positioned differently in each case, so every room has an identity of its own, despite uniform dimensions. The U-shaped building is entered at a central point via the foyer, which is divided into two areas: the entrance area with all information zones, and the rear area with a split-level seating zone, which is the only communal area to be visually apparent on the facade, where it thus also arouses curiosity about the building's interior.

Energy concept
Energy efficiency is achieved via optimization of the building in terms of sustainability (ecology, economy, functionality) in consideration of investment costs and usage costs.
The enveloping surface is defined by efficient thermal insulation of the rear-ventilated facade surfaces and energy-optimized box windows. These generate an optimal indoor climate by means of a user-determined transverse ventilation concept with ventilation flaps in the facade and in the corridor walls. This is bolstered by night cooling, with activation of the solid concrete slabs.

Operational concept
The aforementioned measures render air conditioning unnecessary in this building. In order to achieve the Passive House standard, heat is recovered from the controlled exhaust air during the heating period, in combination with prior temperature control of the supply air by means of underground channels with a low flow rate.

This package of measures successfully keeps the building's energy requirements below the thresholds defined by the Passive House standard.

University of Göttingen

Period of time
2012  –  2014

Werner Huthmacher