Like any good university library, the Polak Building is designed to engender intense focus from the students who work in it. The building, which is the newest addition to the Erasmus University Rotterdam campus in the Dutch city, features crisply white staircases and hallways that are calming and attractive without being florid or distracting.
The Polak Building was designed by Paul de Ruiter Architects, a Dutch studio. Aside from its clean look, the building was meant to be linked to society and the surrounding world rather than suffering from the insularity of many university campuses. The teaching section in the atrium of the Polak Building thus links directly to businesses that are separate from campus life, such as a cafe, a hairdresser, and a shopping center.