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MVSA Architects and Architectenbureau J. Van Stigt have been jointly contracted to design the new University Library for the University of Amsterdam (UvA).

Singel PCH

Together they will create an architectonic design for the structure of the new study centre with an adjoining library, on which the City of Amsterdam Centre District, the municipal Monuments and Archaeology Bureau, the Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands and the UvA reached agreement last year.

The new University Library will be the heart – the central meeting point – of the Faculty of Humanities, which will be clustered in and around the Binnengasthuisterrein and Oudemanhuispoort areas (in the city centre).

Individuality and monumental value

The selection committee, comprising among others representatives of the Monuments and Archaeology Bureau, the Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands and the UvA, stated that the vision of MVSA and Van Stigt catered aptly to the requirements of students and academics. Said the committee: 'The proposal reflects creative thinking and shows respect for the individuality and monumental value of the buildings.' MVSA Architects and  Architectenbureau J. Van Stigt will transpose their vision into an architectonic design in the coming months. The goal is to create a library with a clear UvA identity in Amsterdam’s historic city centre. 

A meeting place

The new University Library will serve a public function by acting as a nexus for teaching and research, and by giving access to the University’s large humanities collection. The Library will also regularly offer lectures, discussions and presentations for the broader public. In addition, it will also have about 1,000 study places equipped with high-quality IT facilities.

The city as campus

The city of Amsterdam is a natural and ideal environment for the UvA. However, with University buildings situated at numerous separate locations, fragmentation has arisen. Moreover, many buildings have over the years become less suitable for modern academic teaching and research, which is why the UvA is concentrating its real estate development in a limited number of areas in Amsterdam: Science Park Amsterdam (science faculty), Roeterseiland (social sciences disciplines), City Centre (humanities) and Amsterdam-Zuidoost (UvA-AMC). Collaboration is encouraged by bringing together facilities and academics from various disciplines.