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New University Building

The New University Building will prioritize multifunctionality by combining teaching, research and the cultural programme of Griffioen and Rialto in the same rooms.

De Boelelaan 1111
1081 HV Amsterdam

Reception: +31 (0)63 86 84042


In this building, education, science and the business community come together. It’s a place where students and staff, primarily in the exact sciences, work and carry out research. But its teaching and learning spaces are also ideally suited to film screenings and theatre performances. The ground floor of the Atrium is home to a coffee bar and a new Culture Café will soon open its doors on De Boelelaan, a partnership between the VU Griffioen Cultural Centre and the Rialto cinema. There will also be an exhibition space: the VU Art & Science Gallery, featuring exhibitions linked to science. On Campusplein, a grand café run by an external catering company will open. The summer of 2021 sees the start of Rialto’s film screenings, while the Griffioen Cultural Centre’s theatrical programme kicks off in September.

Teaching and research

The building is fully equipped to facilitate active learning and blended education. It features collaborative classrooms, a pop-up studio and a hybrid learning theatre.

The departments of Computer Science and Mathematics, and the Institute for Environmental Studies – all part of the Faculty of Science – are located in the building, as is the Educational Workshop. The VU Academic Centre for Behaviour and Movement is a centre for training programmes, courses, research and advice in the context of lifelong development. This centre makes use of the latest scientific insights on pedagogy and education, and consists of the LEARN! Academy, VU Teachers’ Academy and HOVO Amsterdam.

The building houses several state-of-the-art laboratories:

  • The Social AI Lab (SAIL) focuses on making robots more socially intelligent and robot-human interaction feel more natural.
  • The Bio-inspired Robot Lab does pioneering research into robots that evolve and learn. These robots have not been designed by humans, but are developed through mutation and by ‘crossing’ one robot with another.
  • The Physical Computer Lab gives new impulses to the world around us, developing everything from railway tracks and toy cars to dolls and a model radiotherapy machine. It’s where Computer Science students come to program and build intelligent systems, such as self-driving cars. Or to write and test software for safety-critical systems. Software and hardware come together in these projects, because it’s only when both aspects work together optimally that safety can be guaranteed.
  • The Hardware Lab recognizes the increasing importance of security in computer systems and networks. In the knowledge that weak links in our software and hardware can be exploited with malicious intent, VU scientists and students conduct research using data-centre equipment on a smaller scale.
  • The Multipurpose Lab enables scientists and students to configure, solder, test, connect and use devices for measurements. They use the lab’s resources for research, teaching and graduation projects.
  • The Tech Labs belong to one of two VU Amsterdam Interdisciplinary Research Institutes with a strong national and international reputation: the Network Institute. The institute has two flexible tech labs geared towards digital technology research with a focus on human interaction.


The New University Building has been designed with sustainability in mind, with the aim of meeting the criteria for a BREEAM ‘Excellent’ rating. Sustainable measures have been incorporated from the start of the design phase and further developed with the help of the building’s future users. The end result is a viable and energy-efficient facility that is built to last. Acting on the idea that plants and animals are integral to how we live, a rooftop landscape has been designed to welcome flora and fauna and enrich our urban habitat. The building achieves optimum sustainability through its building materials, natural energy sources (heat and cold storage), energy-efficient light sources and energy-efficient equipment such as lifts, escalators and water-saving sanitary fittings.

Ready for the future

Transparent architecture gives the building a welcoming character, while the innovative layout provides the flexibility to respond to the changing needs of users now and in the future.

Parking for vehicles and bicycles

The P3 VU Campus car park is located under the building and has space for 600 cars. It offers disabled parking and charging stations for electric cars. There is also a parking facility for 1,600 bicycles, with some spaces designed to accommodate electric bicycles. In addition to the public section, there is a restricted-access section for VU employees only. Bicycle parking is free of charge and available 24/7. The entrance to the new bicycle parking facility is on De Boelelaan, between the Care and Welfare Educational Institute (OZW) and the New University Building.

See the opening times of all VU buildings.

Development of the New University Building

Discover the New University Building