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Württemberg State Library is awarded the Architecture Prize for Concrete

Published by , Deputy Editor
World Cement,

Before the official opening, the extension to the Württemberg State Library received the Architecture 2020 Concrete Award. The building, designed by the Stuttgart-based architecture firm, Lederer Ragnarsdóttir Oei, is particularly eye-catching due to its exposed concrete facade made from sawn-rough planks based on Dyckerhoff WEISS. The bright colouring of the concrete skin achieved by the white cement is further enhanced by pigmentation with titanium dioxide.

When looking for a suitable construction company, the choice fell on the infrastructure department of Max Bögl, which has experience with board-switched exposed concrete due to the bridge construction. The facade was installed as an in-situ concrete shell with core insulation in front of the load-bearing concrete walls. About 400 t of Dyckerhoff WEISS were used to manufacture the exposed concrete, as well as Rhine sand (0/2 mm), lime chippings (2/8 mm) and lime chippings (8/16 mm). The company Godel-Beton produced approx. 1 000 m³ of white concrete from strength class C35/45, with the consistencies F4 and F5. The formwork consisted of rough sawn tongue and groove boards (gate cut), which were pre-treated with cement slurry.

With this facade, the new building continues the look of the old building, which is also characterised by natural wood formwork. The original building was one of the outstanding architectural achievements of the 1960s in southern Germany. At that time, the architect Prof. Horst Linde, influenced by brutalism, was in charge. As is so often the case, the inclusion and reinterpretation of the circumstances in the surrounding area became a key architectural task. According to the architects, the intention was not to let the extension appear as an independent building. Rather, it should present itself optically as an extension of the much larger original building in terms of area.

The planning competition for a new building that functionally and spatially expanded the old building was put out to tender back in 2010. The design by Lederer Ragnarsdóttir Oei, which won the first prize, realises the task with an independent building that is only connected to the existing building by a footbridge on the first floor. The building permit was granted in April 2014 and the foundation stone was laid in November 2015. The official opening is planned for late summer 2020.

The Baden-Württemberg State Office for Property and Construction is the owner of the extension with a usable area of 11 300 m2 . The building comprises a total of six levels: first basement, ground floor and four upper floors. On the upper floors there are freely accessible lending stocks (a total of 500 000 volumes) and reading spaces. With the refurbishment and renovation of the existing building, a second construction phase will follow, for which completion is also planned to take several years.

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