26. Sep 2016

Vienna University of Economics and Business Campus/AT

Photos: Christof Wagner, Roland Halbe, Markus Kaiser

The new campus for the Vienna University of Economics and Business is one of the most ambitious architectural projects in Austrian post-war history. An “open educational landscape” has been created on 90,000 square metres in the middle of the Prater area, with six prestigious teams of architects making very different contributions. This includes a seven-storey angular tower by NO.MAD from Madrid, the glass and aluminium facade of which reflects the surrounding sky and nature. A two-part building by Carme Pinós, characterised by its particular window arrangement, primarily accommodates seminar and project rooms and an innovative lecture hall centre by Austrian architecture collective BUSarchitektur, with multi-functional lecture halls and the Auditorium Maximum. An additional building designed by Japanese architect Hitoshi Abe looks out over the Trabrennbahn Krieau horse racing track and serves as a student centre.


However, the library and learning Center by Zaha Hadid forms the centrepiece of the project. The striking roof, which protrudes 25 metres with its characteristic display – a large-surface glass panel extending towards the Prater area – highlights this fact. The building’s facades and roof are covered with elegant aluminium and glass strips.


The university’s ceremonial halls and a library cafe and bookshop are located on the ground floor. Visitors are led up through the library via ramps, staircases, and all-round galleries in a gentle spiralling movement towards the “cockpit”, with its combination of books, study desks, and fantastic views of the campus. Huge lighting strips accentuate the building’s major lines and the stairs of the generous atrium. The best place, however, belongs to the students, who are able enjoy a phenomenal view of the green Prater from their library study desks in the protruding section.


Architecture: Zaha Hadid Architects, NO.MAD Arquitectos, Estudio Carme Pinos

Products applied: XAL – Ufo Suspended and Frame 120


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