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    Campus der Universität Bielefeld
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Interim building for the library

Since July 2023, Bau- und Liegeschaftsbetrieb NRW (BLB NRW) has been constructing an interim building for Bielefeld University on the open space between the main university building and building X. The interim building, together with other library spaces in the main university building, will replace the library spaces in this part of the building. Together with other interim spaces in the main university building, the interim building will create a replacement for the library spaces located in this part during the planned second construction phase of the main university building. The single-storey lightweight construction with a planned area of approx. 2,000 square metres offers space for approx. 400,000 media from the book storage areas to be removed in the second construction phase as well as for approx. 20 workstations for users.

For the project duration of the second construction phase, interim accommodation is required for the departmental libraries of Psychology, Educational Science, Sport, Music (currently UHG unit T) as well as Linguistics and Literary Studies and the stacks (currently UHG unit C). Parts of the media stock will be housed in the new interim building, other stocks will remain elsewhere in the main university building.

The interim building will ensure the library's open access operation during the second construction phase. In addition, the central location enables short distances, direct approval and short provisioning times for users.





FAQs about the library's interim building

The university is subject to the requirement of BLB NRW to vacate the parts of the main university building located in the 2nd construction phase by the planned start of construction in 2025. There are no sufficiently large and structurally suitable spaces in the main university building for the library areas accommodated in the second construction phase with a volume of approx. 830,000 media units and 630 student workstations. Other library areas are planned for the first construction phase, which will then be completed. Interim accommodation is therefore unavoidable.




The aim of accommodating the media stock and workstations in a building located as centrally as possible on campus is to keep the restrictions on library services for the use of the physical media stock as low as possible during the interim phase. Studies, teaching and research should continue to be supported in the best possible way through good accessibility, direct approval and rapid (re-)availability of the media.




The interim building on the Campuswiese is associated with the criticism that a popular outdoor lounge and meeting place for students and employees would be restricted and that valuable green space would also be sealed. The Campus Festival, which is held annually on the Campus Meadow until 2023, can no longer take place as before. In addition, there have been isolated accusations against the university administration for not sufficiently involving the students in the decision-making process and for hastily rejecting alternatives to the Campuswiese site. This criticism is taken very seriously by the rectorate.

  • Sealing of the green space: There are no sufficiently large and statically suitable areas in the main university building for the library areas accommodated in the 2nd construction phase. Under the premise of accommodating the media stock and workstations as centrally as possible, by keeping restrictions on library services as low as possible during the interim phase, there was no adequate alternative to the campus lawn within the available budget.
  • Future of the Campus Festival: It is already foreseeable that parts of the open space between the main university building and the X building will also be needed for the construction site facilities of the 2nd BA. This means that the Campus Festival would no longer have been able to take place at the usual location in the future anyway. Bielefeld University, Bielefeld University, Bielefeld Marketing and the event agency Vibra aim to continue the successful festival after 2023. Discussions about an alternative location are ongoing.
  • Student participation: The need for interim accommodation and thus the proposal for the Campuswiese as a location for an interim building has been discussed at length in the Senate since 2020. Students are involved in the Senate in the form of student senators.






Between 2018 and 2022, various options for the interim accommodation of parts of the UB were examined between the university (rectorate, FM department, UB) and the BLB. In 2020, the university management was able to agree on a financial budget of 11.9 million euros with the SU. On this basis, three other alternatives were discussed in addition to the construction of an interim building on the campus lawn:

  1. A two-storey building on the forecourt of building X had to be rejected due to complex structural requirements and the overstepping of the budget.
  2. An extension to Teeth U and V had to be rejected for cost reasons, but also due to the need for contaminant remediation and fire safety constraints.
  3. Most recently, the university came out against a change of use of the AZ building on Kurt-Schumacher-Straße. The reasons for this were the lack of a connection to the library, the impossibility of realising open access operation and an increased need for staff.

Due to the comparatively good planning and implementation feasibility within the budget framework as well as the advantages of centrally located interim accommodation, the "lightweight construction solution" on the Campuswiese was preferred and pursued further.

The university management's concept for interim accommodation was presented and discussed in various university committees between July 2022 and February 2023:

  • July 2022: University) Library Commision (report of the UB management and discussion), Senate (report of the Chancellor and discussion), Rectorate (consultation and approval).
  • August 2022: Exchange with representative body for severely disabled persons (ZAB) and affected Faculties.
  • November 2022: University Development Commission (report and discussion)
  • February 2023: Student representatives (AStA [Student Union], departmental student representative committees and student representatives in the Senate) in focus group discussion

The concept was accepted in all of these discussions and received as a sensible solution.






  • Construction site set-up: since July 2023

  • Completion: Spring 2024 (planned)

  • Executing construction company: Goldbeck Nord GmbH

  • Client: BLB NRW






  • The interim building on the campus lawn between the main university building and the X building
    The interim building on the campus lawn between the main university building and the X building
  • Excavator generously takes the lime tree out of the ground to relocate it sustainably
    The lime tree on the future construction site of the interim building was already moved to its new location opposite the Social Field in mid-February.

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