Otto-von-Guericke University (OvGU) in Magdeburg is one of Germany’s youngest universities. Founded in 1993 and comprising nine faculties with about 14,000 students, it is the main university centre for teaching and research in Saxony-Anhalt. The facilities of Otto-von-Guericke University in Magdeburg are spread over several inner city locations. One of them is the campus at Schroteplatz in the direct vicinity of Magdeburg centre, to the north of the main railway station. With the new construction of Auditorium 6 at this location, a capacity gap that urgently needed to be filled was closed for the 2013/14 winter semester. Planungsbüro Rohling AG (pbr) was commissioned by Otto-von-Guericke University to produce the design for the new construction of the auditorium.
The new building on the campus of Otto-von Guericke University, which consists of a reinforced concrete construction, provides space for up to 300 persons and is available for use by all faculties. Towards the north, the new horseshoe-shaped, two-storey building features curved external walls in a light grey and anthracite-coloured facade cladding consisting of aluminium sandwich panels that provide the building with an appearance that is distinct from the existing university buildings. This emphasises the special function of the building. By moving the foyer forward from the alignment of the existing neighbouring buildings on the campus, the new auditorium building can easily be found by users.
The building is made up of two parts – the auditorium with an oval shape facing south, and the foyer area facing north. The two parts feature contrasting shapes, colours and heights, whilst nevertheless forming a distinct unit. With its angular design, the canopy of the foyer area – with its angular projection – is distinct from the curved external walls of the auditorium. The auditorium is distinct from the foyer due to its difference in height, and the different colour scheme of the facade cladding. To do justice to its function, the foyer has the benefit of generous glazing in some areas. In this way, the building opens up to the visitor and provides a view of the reinforced concrete walls leading to the auditorium. The writing that has been incorporated in the walls in the fashion of a relief conveys the function of the building from a distance. In this area the solid reinforced concrete walls were left in their natural state, without a finish. The foyer includes open student workplaces and a cafeteria. Owing to the glass facade and a high proportion of natural daylight, the students have ideal conditions for study. By arranging the access doors to the auditorium in line with the entrance doors to the entrance foyer, the distance to the events in the auditorium has been kept short. Barrier-free access to the auditorium has been provided on the east side of the building.
On the inside of the auditorium, oak panelling in combination with anthracite-coloured seats and desks create a comfortable working atmosphere. A few of the seats dotted throughout the seating are green in order to loosen up the overall appearance. The ventilation concept includes fresh air outlets beneath every seat and a concealed extraction system within the auditorium ceiling. Next to the auditorium, service functions such as plant rooms, preparation rooms, a control room and sanitary facilities have been accommodated in the building complex. The colour coding of the circulation routes to the auditorium (green), the plant rooms (red) and sanitary facilities (yellow) follows the general colour scheme employed throughout the OvGU university building.