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Vienna University Campus

Saturday 14 January 2012, by Ary DEHBONEI

Wirtschaftsuniversität Wien (WU) or Vienna University of Economics and Business is the largest University focusing on business and economics in Europe and, in terms of student body, one of the largest universities in Austria. It has been ranked as one of the best business schools in Europe. Today, WU Wien has more than 20,000 students and over 400 researchers and teachers, among those about 80 full professors.

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New Campus of the Vienna University of Economics and Business (WU)
The international, two-stage competition for the provision of architectural services for the new Campus of the Vienna University of Economics and Business was undertaken concurrently for several complexes of buildings.

Following the presentation of the Master Plan for the new Campus in May 2008, the WU and Bundesimmobiliengesellschaft (BIG), together with Austria’s Federal Minister of Science and Research Johannes Hahn and City Councillor Rudolf Schicker (Department for Urban Development and Traffic), announced the winning projects of the pertaining Architectural Competition. The international, two-stage competition for the provision of architectural services for the new Campus was undertaken concurrently for several complexes of buildings.

The Jury decided upon the selection of the following projects:

  • Zaha Hadid Architects – Zaha Hadid, Germany Library & Learning Center (LLC)
  • Hitoshi Abe Studio – Hitoshi Abe; Japan Department Building (O2)
  • Estudio Carme Pinos – Carme Pinos, Spain Department Building (W1)
  • NO.MAD Arquitectos – Eduardo Arroyo, Spain Executive Academy (W1-EA)
  • CRABstudio Architects – Peter Cook, England Department Building (W2)

The first turn of the sod for the new location was in October 2009. On a surface of about 100,000m² the university will be built close to the public park Prater and the exhibition centre of Vienna. The master plan was created by BUSarchitektur under the guidance of the architect Laura P. Spinadel. The buildings of the campus are designed by architectures from Spain, England, Germany, Japan and Austria. The dominant element of the campus should be the Library & Learning Centre which was planned by Zaha Hadid.

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The “Mille Feuille” design for a department building by Hitoshi Abe Studio
Hitoshi Abe was born in Sendai, Miyagi, Japan, 1962. He studied architecture at the Tohoku University in Sendai. In 1989 after obtaining his master’s degree at the Southern California Institute of Architecture in Los Angeles, he worked in the Viennese architecture practise Coop Himmelb(l)au in their studio in L.A. until 1992. When, in 1992, he obtained his PhD in architecture at the Tohoku University, the same year he set up the atelier Hitoshi Abe in Sendai.
Abe is among the most important architects of the current Japanese generation. He is known for his work that is spatially complex and structurally innovative. Among his best-known public works are the Miyagi stadium (2000) and the Reihoku community hall, for which he received the 2003 architectural institute of Japan award. He heads the architectural design laboratory at Tohoku University and is involved in establishing an international network of architectural training, offering workshops and exchange programmes with foreign universities.

The start of the construction was in June 2010 and pave the way for the largest campus for business sciences in Europe. After a construction period of 3 years the investment of 500 million Euros will be finished in 2013. The connection to the public transport system is the new extension of the underground line U2, buses and the closeness to the hub Praterstern.


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