Dramatic interlocking volumes and sharp angles define the new green-roofed Central Building at Leuphana University in Germany. Studio Libeskind designed the project in collaboration with students at the university, where Libeskind works as a part-time professor. The result is a distinct zinc-clad building that will serve as an incubator for new ideas, innovation and research.
The 139,930-square-foot building, located on the university’s main campus in the southern part of Lüneburg, integrates a Research Center, a Student Center, spaces for seminars and an auditorium into a single structure. Interlocking volumes facilitate cross-disciplinary interaction and collaborative learning.
Upon entering the building, visitors are greeted by a swooping triple-height atrium awash in natural light coming through a half dozen skylights. Stairs and bridges puncture the volume and communicate the complexity of the space.
The cafeteria and workshops are located on the ground floor, labs and offices occupy the upper floors, and the three-story Seminar Center with a curved roof forms the main entry. Exposed concrete and canted walls are combined with smoked oak parquet throughout the building, and red-painted walls provide way-finding and orientation.
The building will operate at zero emissions thanks to its remarkably efficient design and the use of renewable energy sources. Sustainable design features include a green roof, a grey water system and an innovative Cobiax structural system.