The design for the new building for the University of Leipzig in Leipzig, Germany, is situated on the site of the former Pauliner Church, the only church to remain undamaged during the war, yet later demolished in 1968 during the former GDR regime. With his design Erick van Egeraat found a consensus for decades of debate about the reconstruction of university’s Pauliner Kirche. The inner-city University redevelopment consists of three main elements: the Auditorium, the Main Building and the Audimax. The Aula with Vestry (Andachtsraum), a contemporary interpretation of the former University Church, is a multifunctional space and will be used – like the original church – for church services as well as for academic ceremonies, concerts and scientific conferences. With the original church space and its cross vault as a reference, the vault construction is erected from a combination of white glossy and matte plaster work, crossing over into translucent and transparent glass columns.
The auditorium space has a number of special features such as an integrated organ and the world’s highest transparent sliding door consisting of two sections both with a height of 15,5m, which divides the church space in two: the more secular auditorium for different events, and the more contemplative so-called ‘Andachtsraum’, where the Epitaphs are displayed. The vaults with the columns – where three column pairs do not continue to the floor in order to increase the functionality – ensure that the space, regardless of the sliding door, can be experienced as a whole.
Yesterday saw the topping-out ceremony of a new building designed by Dutch architect Erick van Egeraat for the University of Leipzig in Germany.
The new complex never the less gives some insight into the past in its details. E.g. the Paulinum’s façade in Leipzig, where the rosette and the large stained-glass window are set slightly off center.
Erick van Egeraat's concept for historic institution reaches final stages in Germany