#012 Self-administered student residence for Heidelberg


Location: Hospital conversion area, Rohrbach
Client: Collegium Academicum GmbH
Architecture: DGJ Architektur, Frankfurt am Main, with Pirmin Jung Ingenieure, Sinzig

»Living together, learning from each other and passing on one’s own knowledge are combined in this project. On the conversion areas, the project will enrich the university city of Heidelberg in an unusual way.«
IBA advisory board

The »Collegium Academicum«, student housing of a different kind, is expected to be built on the »Hospital« conversion area in the Rohrbach district by 2019. This self-managed accommodation for around 200 students fulfils social responsibility at various levels. Particularly noteworthy is the educational concept, which is integrated into the house in »propaedeutic studies«. Up to 50 places are available in the existing building. Furthermore, project-based studying is to be offered for the neighborhood, the district and in the city.
This hall of residence follows the principle of sufficiency (the quality of comfortable necessities), which is reflected in the four-story timber building. This becomes, for instance, apparent in the exible living space design.

The architect — Hans Drexler from Frankfurt — was selected with the help of the IBA by means of a workshop procedure and has made a decisive contribution to obtain funding of around € 2.2 million from the Federal Ministry of Construction under the »Variowohnungen« funding program of the »Zukunft-BAU« research initiative. This is complemented by research funds from the German Federal Environmental Foundation. Financing through direct loans in accordance with the »Mietshäuser Syndikat« model is a task that the volunteer group faces daily with support from the IBA and the City of Heidelberg.

The project is an example of a successful bottom-up process in which the initiators have become investors and the IBA helps future occupants to proconversion areas, the project will enrich the university city.


May 03, 2017 | Collegium Academicum receives €10,000 funding

Congratulations to the students of Collegium Academicum in Heidelberg! SPONSORT and IBA Heidelberg have financed the first mobile hall of residence with €10,000. Now it can be implemented.

March 27, 2017 | Crowd funding in urban development: The winner is known

For four weeks candidates and projects of IBA Heidelberg stood for a public vote via the platform SPONSORT. Voters could choose between five projects with a cultural focus. The votes were counted to determine the winner who can now implement their project with €10,000 prize money. Further details

Nov. 20, 2016 | Collegium Academicum opens its doors for the first time

On Sunday 20 November, 2016 Collegium Academicum opened its doors for the first time on the former premises of the US Hospital, and invited interested citizens to find out about the project. To underline the college’s future function as a knowledge space, visitors could take Apart in various workshops and learn from and with one another.
More information

March 10, 2016 | Students dorm "Collegium Academicum" moves into the Hospital

The City of Heidelberg has indicated its willingness to provide a site for the IBA_PROJECT “Collegium Academicum”: The idea is for it to locate to a space in the northeast of the approx. 9 hectares of area of conversion in Rohrbach designated as the “US Hospital”.

Having got to know various architects in the course of qualifying workshops on topics such as “self-sufficiency” or “education concepts”, the students have now chosen to collaborate in-depth with architect Hans Drexler and his company Drexler Guinand Jauslin and have teamed up with him to devise the first concepts for their house.

The “Drexler Guinand Jauslin” architectural office is specialized in sustainable and innovative residential building. This is in line with the students’ wish to create a self-sufficient student dorm in Heidelberg – with integrated education offerings – for over 200 inhabitants.

Oct. 9, 2015 | Collegium Academicum gives insights into a colorful past

The Collegium Academicum can look back on a colorful past in Heidelberg, and a touring exhibition is now offering insights into the association’s history. On 9 October 2015 publicist and historian Gerd Koenen opened the exhibition in the university archive.

July 16, 2015 | Collegium Academicum becomes an IBA_PROJECT

At the Supervisory Board meeting in June 2015, the Collegium Academicum was selected as an IBA_PROJECT. Together with the IBA office, the candidate spent a year refining the relevant ideas: In talks with experts from various disciplines, through academic and design-workshops, the group fine-tuned its concepts. Then came the decision from the supervisory board of IBA Heidelberg: the financial, organizational and conceptual basis of this candidate had been advanced sufficiently to enable the next steps towards the construction project to be approached jointly.

18.05.2015 | How can we boost the intelligence of our house? IBA workshop on the educational concept

How can a student residence in Heidelberg be brought to life with an interesting and comprehensive educational program? Experts from throughout Germany gave insights into the topics of propaedeutics, tutorial programs, project learning and study in parallel to the semester program and emphasized this with practical examples. Speakers included:
Michael Behal, Leibniz College, Tübingen
Jasmin Tran, University of Heidelberg
Merlin Wolf, University of Heidelberg
Daniel Ixkes, University of Witten/Herdecke

March 23, 2015 | How can we boost the intelligence of our house? IBA workshop on low-impact living

In cooperation with the Collegium Academicum e.V., the IBA organized a workshop on the topic of “low-impact living”. The aim was to answer both theoretical and practical questions: What does low-impact living, economic activity and construction mean to Heidelberg students? How can we create the prerequisites for low-impact living? What is necessary for life? And where can we avoid excessive consumption? The speakers Dr. Lars-Arvid Brischke from ifeu Berlin, Prof. Hans Drexler from Drexler Guinand Jauslin Architects (Frankfurt/Main), Prof. Susanne Hofmann from die Baupiloten Berlin, Arne Steffen from werk.um Darmstadt and Claudia Thiesen from Kraftwerk1 Zürich all outlined the theoretical basics and gave insights into practical experiences on the theme of “low-impact living”, underlining their remarks with very specific project examples.

  • Key Data

    February 2014
    CANDIDATE Status

    March 2015
    Su ciency workshop

    May 2015
    Preparatory workshop

    June 2015
    PROJECT Status

    March 2016
    Workshop Variowohnen Foundation of the GmbH

    October 2016
    Sponsorship brochure

    December 2017
    Research funding DBU Building permit

    February 2018
    Federal funding Variowohnungen