Changes to opening times for TU Berlin buildings from 25.11.2022

Dear TU Berlin Community,

To help save energy, the Executive Board decided on 15.11.2022 to introduce changes to the opening times of TU Berlin buildings. This decision was taken with the approval of the Staff Council and the Staff Council for Student Assistants. The academic chairs and research groups were also consulted in detail before this decision was taken.

What are the new opening times?

The changes are effective from 25.11.2022 until, initially, the end of March 2023.
All TU Berlin buildings will remain open weekdays from 5:00 until 22:00.

Buildings will be closed on weekdays in the night

  • between 22:00 and 5:00
  • and on weekends from Fridays at 22:00 until Mondays at 5:00
  • as well as on public holidays from 22:00 on the day before until 5:00 on the day following the public holiday.

Which buildings are not affected by the new opening times?

The University Library in the Volkswagenhaus will continue to operate the same opening hours as normal. This is mainly to enable students to continue working and studying there. Around 1200 work spaces are available.

The EB Building will remain open around the clock 7 days a week and thus offers students an additional space where they can study and work together.

The sports facilities in the EB Building will remain accessible as normal.

The sports facilities in Waldschulallee and Dovestraße are affected by the new opening hours. However, they will remain partially open on weekends. Please check with the University Sports Office.

Changes to opening hours for the Buildings A, SE, and ACK

However, in order to ensure that students in degree programs with a strong project focus are able to work, we have extended the new opening hours as follows: From 7 January through the end of February 2023, the studios and project rooms in Buildings A, SE, and ACK will be open to students on weekends from 10-22:00. The rooms are strictly to be used to complete projects. Use is subject to certain regulations, which will be communicated separately in good time.

Who is affected by the changed opening times?

If your working hours are between 5:00 and 22:00 on workdays, then nothing changes for you.

If you usually work between 22:00 and 5:00 or on weekends, we kindly ask you to change your working hours or the place where you work.

If you have to enter the building for a short time at night or on weekends for essential technical reasons (an exceptional case approved by your manager), you will be granted access to the relevant building for the necessary period. (See below for further details)

What will change in the buildings?

Every weekday from 21:00 onwards, buildings will be shut down, lights in communal areas, i.e. corridors, staircases and foyers, will be switched off (if staff have not already done so). Entrance doors to buildings will be locked at 22:00. Ventilation, electricity etc. will remain available. It will still be possible to run computers or other equipment overnight to conduct experiments.

Please end events at 21:00 and also conclude your working day at this time. Please take account of the changes to opening times etc. when planning future events and work schedules. 

How can you gain access to buildings in justified exceptional cases?

Managers must ensure that access is only permitted in justified exceptional cases. The basis for this is the feedback provided by the academic chairs and research groups in response to surveys as well as information provided by the central university institutes. Lists are drawn up by the academic chairs and research groups authorizing short-term access to buildings in the exceptional cases described. These lists are presented to information desk staff by the persons authorized to enter. For buildings that don’t have information desks, the lists are presented to the nearest information desks (the Main Building for the south and east campus, and the Architecture Building for the north campus). Persons who require access to buildings must report to the information desks indicating how long they plan to spend in the building and hand in their staff ID. Authorized persons will be accompanied by information desk staff or a member of security staff, who will unlock and lock the respective building. Please also note that you must provide sufficient staff from your own area for working procedures requiring the presence of more than one person at a time for reasons of occupational safety. Information desk and security staff are generally not available for this purpose.

How can you be added to the list of persons authorized to enter buildings?

If your supervisor has not yet placed your name on the list, this can still be done in justified cases. In the case of new staff, for example. Names can be added to the list by either the head of the academic chair or research group or the person responsible in central University institutes.

What about buildings that have no information desks and are not part of the central campus?

For buildings located away from the central campus that have no information desks, e.g those in Dahlem, you are required to sign in and out with the relevant manager and obtain keys from them.

What do managers need to consider regarding protective measures?

It may happen that there is restricted pathway and escape route lighting in some areas at TU Berlin. We recommend that you carry a flashlight if you need to enter the premises/buildings outside the new opening times. Please be aware, however, that entering the premises or buildings outside the new opening hours is at your own risk. Unauthorized persons may not enter.

Risk assessments with descriptions of protective measures must be documented and can be sent to Occupational Health and Safety Services and Environmental Protection (SDU) for comments and advice. To help managers decide which measures to adopt, SDU has drawn up a set of protective measures entitled "Guide to General Protective Measures in the Event of Night and Weekend Closure - Decentralized Emergency Management in Particular of Laboratory and Research Facilities."

What else is important?

To prevent vandalism and other unwanted issues, it is very important to ensure that doors and windows are kept locked at all times during the times when the buildings are closed. Similarly, lights must be switched off when leaving buildings.

Due to the very different infrastructure of the various buildings, it is hard to provide general guidelines and the regulations described require a high level of understanding and cooperation. 

How can my team and I save energy?

To achieve real savings by closing buildings requires the unconditional cooperation of all management and staff and students at TU Berlin and a strict application of the following decentralized measures. Please also feel free to supplement these with specific measures for your own unit. 

  • Set heating thermostats to levels 0 to 2 (maximum)
  • Switch off room lighting
  • Close windows
  • Ensure the safety of research facilities and equipment
  • Shut down PCs and other electronic devices 
  • Shut down ventilation (in particular digestors, if possible to do so decentrally)
  • Where possible, please unplug mains adapters from the mains socket

The Executive Board’s appeal to all TU Berlin members

TU Berlin has previously operated its more than 100 buildings 24 hours a day, seven days a week, every week of the year. This practice will now be discontinued in order to help protect the climate and save energy. The new regulations apply initially until the end of March 2023. The Executive Board requests all TU Berlin members to help by observing the new opening hours and adapting their working and study practices accordingly. In some cases, this may also mean having to make changes to established routines.

The University cannot achieve the required energy savings of 10-15% through central energy control alone, especially not in terms of electricity consumption. We can only cushion the impact on the budget and maintain face-to-face teaching with your full cooperation throughout the University.

Contact

Task Force Energie: energie(at)tu-berlin.de