Research & Education

New structures for Herzog August Library, Wolfenbüttel

The Herzog August Library (HAB) in Wolfenbüttel is an internationally significant library and research facility, primarily devoted to the Middle Ages and the early modern period.

Urbanistic incorporation of the new structures:
The new depot building and the service building, in interplay with the library building and director's building, which are both heritage-protected, create a courtyard situation that is characterized by its proportions and spacing. The elevated connecting passage between library, service building and depot forms a protective bracket around the director's building and maintains a respectful distance.

Architectural concept:
Based on an idea from the librarian Leibniz, who worked here in an earlier era, the books are to be made visible and used as a means of shaping spaces. The books exhibited in the Wilhelmine main building serve as the model and inspiration for the new structures' facades. Light-colored vertical natural stone with dark seams symbolize Duke August's vellum-bound book collection. In the facade, the natural stone blocks are divided into fields of different sizes, much like the division of the books into 20 different subject areas. The new three-story structure is divided into the actual depot, solely for storage and archiving of valuable books, and an area on the 2nd floor with offices and other rooms, some of which are used for preservation purposes (book maintenance, climate control, painting depot). Overall, in the interplay with the pre-existing buildings, a structural ensemble was produced, which emphasizes the significance of the site and provides optimal research conditions for visitors from all around the world.

Staatliches Baumanagement Braunschweig

Period of time
2009 – 2013

Werner Huthmacher