Design Studio SS 99

ARCHITECTURE ROOM – A center for the study of architecture

Thought background

The adequate design of an architectural training institution has been and will continue to be a subject of reflection in the future. On the one hand, such institutions serve as showpieces in the architectural discourse, but on the other hand they also function as teaching and learning environments, which can ultimately be referred to at any time. They thus represent the built visual lesson and teach the lesson on a scale of 1:1, as it were. The question arises as to how a thought construct conceived in this way can be transformed into a structural appearance. Whether it is a self-contained structure or rather the growing, never-to-be-finished building site that provides the necessary environment for the architectural lesson. This external, immediate way of encountering and contacting the student with the world of planning and building certainly represents a fundamental parameter in the understanding of what architecture actually is and what function it has to fulfill apart from protection against the weather.

Institutes and facilities that support the teaching of architecture are currently scattered relatively widely across the main TU building at Karlsplatz and adjacent properties. This situation is alleviated to some extent by the almost exclusive use of the fourth floor, but an increased concentration could be realized after the vacancy of some premises around the turn of the millennium. In this context, the idea of taking possession of the current “courtyard without a title” – i.e., that area adjacent to the lamb wing of the TU main building, the former Hotel Ödenburg, and the “Goldene Lamm” – seems particularly interesting. Connections to and from the 2nd courtyard are also planned after the Technical Testing and Research Institute has moved out.

Target direction

Already in the 4th chapter of the “Medium-Term Development Concept” (the so-called MEK 2000 of the Faculty of Spatial Planning and Architecture) various deficits are explained. First, it calls for improved access for students to textbooks, journals, catalogs and other information media. Whether this facility is run as a pure faculty library (media library) or as an archive needs to be investigated. In any case, it seems important to set up study spaces exclusively for students of architecture. In addition, there is an immense need for “support rooms” in which design courses can be held. In contrast to the lecture hall equipment, such rooms are to be set up for “individual artistic instruction in groups”. Lecture hall seating, for example, hinders the circulation of design documents in their entirety.


In the context of this course the common, programmatic discussion is of importance first of all. This also includes the preparation of basic principles for the subsequent design development, which, however, is to be carried out exclusively individually. The performance thus includes the specification of spatial needs (development study) up to the sectional representation on a scale of 1:20 (spatial design concerns). With regard to year-round use (under existing climatic conditions), appropriate precautions are to be taken.