University Library TU Chemnitz
Photo: Till Schuster
Photo: Till Schuster

University Library TU Chemnitz

Glowing lines between tradition and modernity at Alte Aktienspinnerei

Since 2020, optimal conditions for reading and learning can be found in the »Alte Aktienspinnerei« building in Chemnitz.

Built in the middle of the 19th century, this building was one of the most modern spinning mills in all of Saxony. After an eventful history replete with building use conversions, war damages, vacancy, decay and talk of demolition, the idea to turn this icon of the industrial revolution, in Chemnitz, into the new central library of the Technical University matured. The result contains more than 11,000 m2 of publication and resource space with more than 700 workspaces.

Individually manufactured lights from mawa illuminate most areas of the building. They are able to accomodate a wide variety of uses and succeed masterfully in the context of a demanding historical renovation.

Project Developer and Client

Freistaat Sachsen, Sächsisches Staatsministerium der Finanzen
Staatsbetrieb Sächsisches Immobilien und Baumanagement

Architect

ARGE Aktienspinnerei Chemnitz Lungwitz, Dresden
Heine Mildner, Dresden
Rabe, Berlin

Technical equipment

INNIUS GTD GmbH, Dresden
TEAMPLAN Ingenieure GmbH, Leipzig

Project management mawa design

Dirk Salewski
Marco Schölzel

Scope of services

36 × surface-mounted spotlights with PMMA-Diffusor
as a single line, L 1200 × W 40 × H 55 mm

36 × surface-mounted spotlights with PMMA-Diffusor
as a single line, L 1200 × W 40 × H 55 mm, with emergency light monitoring module

58 × surface-mounted spotlights with PMMA-Diffusor
as a single line, L 1500 × W 40 × H 55 mm

39 × surface-mounted spotlights with PMMA-Diffusor
as a single line, L 1500 × W 40 × H 55 mm, with emergency light monitoring module

9 × surface-mounted spotlights with PMMA-Diffusor
in 3 piece arrangement, L 600 × W 240 × H 55 mm

18 × surface-mounted spotlights with PMMA-Diffusor
in 3 piece arrangement, L 600 × W 240 × H 55 mm, with emergency light monitoring module

34 × surface-mounted spotlights with PMMA-Diffusor
in 10 piece arrangement, L 1200 × W 1200 × H 55 mm, with emergency light monitoring module

376 × potsdam table lamp po 1

76 × potsdam table lamp po 1
30 mm higher than standard version

Photo: Till Schuster
Photo: Till Schuster

Light, Light, Light

When laying out the workspaces, the planners always desired proximity to daylight.

This is impressively evident in the central reading hall. Here, the imposing daylight ceiling as well as the potsdam table lights ensure ideal working conditions.

Photo: Till Schuster

Modern Interpretation

On the top floor, workspaces are also grouped around the daylight-flooded central structure, and spatially defined to the rear by a built-in shelving system along the wall.

Linear lights follow the rhythm of the acoustic ceiling above. In comparison with traditional fluorescent lamps, their diffuse light-emitting characteristics are concentrated exclusively on the lower half of the room and provide especially efficient ambient lighting

Photo: Till Schuster

In Rows

Linear lights in rows illuminate cloak rooms in the basement.

Photo: Till Schuster

Grouped

In the entrance hall, the planners chose to highlight the design of the coffered ceiling and combine ten single linear lights with a rectangular support structure. The challenge here was to make the construction hinged in order to access air conditioning and loudspeaker components positioned underneath.

Photo: Till Schuster

Or Reduced

In the stairwell, the design principle is repeated in a reduced size with three shortened linear lights.

Photo: Till Schuster

Today, this successful symbiosis between a historical structure and modern use unites all six of the previously spread-out library locations under one roof.

Photo: Till Schuster