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uni'alumni 2016

with hazardous substances. The windows let in too little natural light, and there was a lot of wasted space in many of the rooms, such as the enormous foyer and the long hallways. Last but not least, the old UB was not designed for the “greatest revolu- tion in the media industry since the invention of the printing press,” says Kellerson – the trend toward digital publication, which is set to increase further in the future. Already today, the UB spends far more than 60 percent of its acquisitions budget on electronic media and runs a digitalization center that scans in historical holdings to make them available online. In addition, the UB aims to develop a university-wide concept for reducing the number of off-site departmental libraries from 60 to around 10 to 15. It is uncertain how these plans will impact future use of the UB. Furnishings Provide Internal Structure So how long will it be before the new building is torn down? “If needs change in the long run, we can adapt the space to meet them,” explains Kellersohn. This is possible because there are hardly any inside walls in the entire building – what gives the build- ing its internal structure is the furnishings. It would therefore be relatively easy to change the amount of workspaces in the reading rooms and the Parla- torium. The UB would even be able to accommodate extreme scenarios that could potentially result from digitalization: If future students prefer to study at home, the building could be used exclusively as a place to store books, uniting all holdings from the departmental libraries. If the opposite is the case 2016 CELEBRATION WEEK Starting on 22 February 2016, the university will spend a week celebrating the new University Library (UB). The opening event with Rector Prof. Dr. Hans-Jochen Schiewer in the reception hall will feature the premiere screening of a documentary film on the building’s renovation introduced by Dr. Franz Leithold, director of the University Library Media Center. More events are scheduled for the following days, some of them in cooperation with partner institutions like Theater Freiburg and Literaturbüro Freiburg, as well as guided tours open to the public. The program will be announced on the UB website in early 2016. » The new building will consume up to 65 percent less energy than the old one, says Karl-Heinz Bühler, head of the University Building Authority Photo: UBA Freiburg and students need even more individual and group workspaces in the city center, it would be possible to reduce the amount of books and remove the shelving from the upper floors. Even entirely new uses are conceivable: “We have done our utmost to ensure that the UB can meet changing demands,” says Kellersohn, “but this potential will only be unleashed in the course of the coming decades.” Nicolas Scherger » 9 Cover Story uni'alumni 2016 Put it on the tray, and away it goes: The automatic transport system takes books back to their place. The University Library generates some of its own electricity – Freiburg’s largest urban photovoltaic system is installed on the roof. Photo: Poppen & Ortmann KG, Freiburg/, Freiburg