University Administration Building

Monument renovated


Administration University in former chapel

University Administration Building

Until the 1990s the library of Leiden University was housed in a mixed clutch of buildings on Rapenburg. On its departure its place was to be taken by the university's administrative centre. The most valuable building of the ensemble is a former chapel dating from the 14th century, though scarcely recognizable as such after a whole string of alterations and additions. After demolishing a neighbouring building, the front facade of the chapel, with its massive buttresses, was back in view. The cross windows clearly belong to the present, though they refer also to old church architecture.


Originally the client also wanted to demolish the 'storehouse' at the rear. But it proved possible to prime this distinctive 19th-century feature with its cast-iron columns to receive the new, administrative function. Its height, a mere 2.25 metres, was made up for by two voids created by removing sections of floor, and by making the low-ceilinged offices wider than usual.


The transformation of the entire complex came with a new logistics structure.
The various parts are accessed from a central lobby located in a restored reading room. The monumental stair was fully reinstated.

By demolishing a second portion, the so-called 'bulb-shed', the rear of the complex could be graced with an intimate city garden designed by André van den Eerenbeemt.
From this semi-public garden, which can be accessed from Rapenburg, you can see both the resemblance (in colour) and the contrast (in form) between the chapel and the storehouse.

  • airial view
  • Luuk Kramer
    facade
  • Luuk Kramer
    chapel
  • Kees Stuip
    stairs
  • Kees Stuip
    stairs
  • Luuk Kramer
    stairs
  • Luuk Kramer
    windows
  • Luuk Kramer
    hallway
  • Luuk Kramer
    monumental staircase
  • Luuk Kramer
    monumental staircase
  • Luuk Kramer
    office space
  • Luuk Kramer
    office space
  • Luuk Kramer
    stairs
  • Luuk Kramer
    boardroom
  • Luuk Kramer
    work space
  • Luuk Kramer
    cantine
  • Luuk Kramer
    hallway
  • Luuk Kramer
    stairs in the hallway
  • Luuk Kramer
    hallway
  • Luuk Kramer
    round window
  • Luuk Kramer
    meetingroom
  • Luuk Kramer
    ceiling detail
  • Luuk Kramer
    work space
  • atelier PRO
    Location
  • atelier PRO
    ground floor
  • atelier PRO
    second floor