Perhaps bored with olympic stadiums, high-design shoe stores, and wild factory conversions, master starchitect Zaha Hadid has lent her deft, swooping touch to the Vienna University of Economics and Business. Just last week, the school's brand new Library and Learning Center opened its doors to the public, unveiling, well, almost exactly what you'd expect from Hadid's take on a school library to look like.
The 301,389-square-foot building—designed to comfortably fit 24,000 students and 1800 staff—looks more in line with Hadid's Innovation Tower at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University than, say, her soft, amorphous gallery extension in London's Kensington Gardens. Indeed, the most prominent part of the building is an enormous, jutting black box made of rieder glass and fiber-reinforced concrete panels that sits on the roof of the building—creating an overhang above the main entrance. It's just this piece that actually houses the public library, while the white base—no color here, in true Hadid form—is reserved for classrooms and offices.
The entire facade of the building slopes at a 35-degree angle, which lets the floors increase in size on the topmost floors—creating that extreme slant reminiscent of the metro station masquerading as a cruise Hadid's proposed for Saudi Arabia. Inside, students will find white-washed undulating hallways. Dezeen has more pictures of the wonderfully weird library's interior and exterior, as well as video footage, so please, right this way.
· Library and Learning Centre in Vienna by Zaha Hadid Architects [Dezeen]
· Zaha Hadid: library and learning center in Vienna opens [Design Boom]
· All Zaha Hadid coverage [Curbed National]