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Leibniz University Hannover Opens New Convention Centre

Leibniz University Hannover Opens New Convention Centre

Press release from
Innenansicht des Konferenzraums Innenansicht des Konferenzraums Innenansicht des Konferenzraums
© Michael Matthey/LUH

“Königlicher Pferdestall” (royal stables) brings together science and culture

On Wednesday 22 May 2019, Professor Volker Epping (President of LUH) and Professor Erich Barke (initiator of the project) opened the new convention centre of Leibniz University Hannover. As a forum for communication located on the campus of Leibniz University Hannover, the "Königlicher Pferdestall" will provide a venue for welcoming international guests, as well as for conferences, seminars, presentations, graduation ceremonies, and cultural events.

In his welcoming speech, President Volker Epping thanked his predecessor Professor Barke and all sponsors: "I would like to express my gratitude to my predecessor in office, Erich Barke, for his hard work and dedication, for believing in a project that will create a new home for our researchers, as well as for cultural activities and science in Hannover. Without the support of our sponsors, this ambitious project would not have been possible. By acquiring federal government funding for this 'national historic monument', we received additional financial support. However, we will have to continue to raise funds. I am very pleased that from this day forward, we will be able to start using this building for our university."

Professor Erich Barke looked back at the beginnings of the project and appreciated the hard work of those involved: "Unfortunately, I was not able to tackle this project more actively and reach enough sponsors during my tenure period. However, recent years have shown that it is possible to implement this project with the aid of supporters. I do hope that we will be able to acquire private and public funding for the next phase of construction, since turning this historic building into a venue for bringing people together is a matter of great importance to me."

An open foyer, as well as an area that serves as both an auditorium and a chamber music hall for approximately 150 people are located on the ground floor of the east wing and were built during the initial redevelopment phase of the historic stable. In addition, the roof and the front of the building were redeveloped. The roof structure was altered and a new stairwell had to be built since both original stairwells were just a few centimetres too narrow to be approved as escape routes. The total area of the building is 1,600 square metres. To date, total costs for the project amount to more than four million euros. Thereof, two million euros were acquired through donations and sponsorship; the remaining costs were covered by Leibniz University Hannover within the scope of building maintenance. Sponsors include Professor Ursula Hansen, Dietmar and Margit Harting, HDI, Deutsche Stiftung Denkmalschutz, Sigrid v. Berlepsch-Valderà, Kurt-Alten-Stiftung, enercity, Klosterkammer Hannover, Lenze, and Niedersächsische Bingostiftung für Umwelt und Entwicklungszusammenarbeit. Moreover, redevelopment work was partly realised through funding from numerous other contributions.

In order to make the building fully accessible, a lift will be installed during the second construction phase in the west wing of the building, which will begin after relocation of the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering. The Foyer, all restrooms, as well as the upstairs offices will also be reconstructed. Furthermore, there will be a restaurant with outdoor seating. Costs for the second phase of construction are estimated at approximately three million euros, which will be financed in equal parts by the university and through donations. The budget committee of the German Bundestag has already granted 200,000 euros of funding for the second phase of construction.

Built in 1888, the long red brick building on Appelstraße 7 was used as a stable for the horse cavalry of the royal "uhlan" regiment. The Prussians built several facilities for the "uhlan" regiment in the Appelstraße area. The "Königlicher Pferdestall" was the only building to be conserved.

Note to editors:

For further information, please contact Mechtild Freiin v. Münchhausen, spokesperson of Leibniz University Hannover and head of Communications and Marketing (Tel. +49 511 762 5342, Email: vonMuenchhausen@zuv.uni-hannover.de ).