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The Annex

The reconstruction after the Second World War started in 1945/46 with the northern part of the west wing and, divided into six construction phases, took a quarter of a century. In the autumn of 1947 the library was given provisional quarters in the former party buildings in Arcisstrasse. In the building in Ludwigstrasse business could only be taken up again after 1952, after the tedious reintegration of the evacuated collections. However, the users and the employees still had to live with makeshift constructional solutions for many years. In 1966 the annex, designed by the association of architects Hans Doellgast, Sep Ruf and Helmut Kirsten, and the east wing, of which only the outside walls had still been intact at the end of the war, were completed, and in 1970 the reconstruction was finally concluded with the inauguration of the south wing, which had been completely destroyed during the war.
Whereas the west wing and the middle section of the old building now host the computer centre and the special departments, the south wing now mainly hosts the Department of Manuscripts and Early Printed Books as well as stacks. The annex has a dimension of 59 x 42 x 22 metres. On the ground floor, it comprises the Departments of Collection Development and Cataloguing and offices of the Department of User Services; on the first floor, the annex hosts the General Reading Room with 550 working places; and in the basement the Periodicals Reading Room. The ground floor in the east section of the old building hosts the book provision section and the computer workstations at which the visitors can research the online catalogue and order items.
In the years 1995 to 2004 the building on Ludwigstrasse was refurbished comprehensively, incurring costs of altogether almost 40 million Euro. The refurbishment had become necessary since in the reconstruction after the Second World War unsuitable materials had frequently been used, since modern security standards were not met to a sufficient degree and since funds for building maintenance had been scarce during the 1970s and 1980s. The removal of asbestos, the modernisation of the air conditioning system, replacement of the book conveying system and installation of fibre glass connections throughout the building were important cornerstones in the course of refurbishment. All works were carried out during full, unlimited business. In 1997 the thoroughly modernised General Reading Room could be inaugurated, the Periodicals Reading Room in 1999. The restoration of the grounds and the installation of a new system of signposts and guidance marked the end of refurbishment in 2004. In 2007 the  Sponsors and Friends of the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek found sponsors for the reconstruction of the colours and the ornaments of the 22 window arcs in the great staircase in an approximation to the original design by Gaertner.
Despite the reconstruction and the erection of the annex the capacity of the stacks in Ludwigstrasse has long been exhausted. Over one half of the holdings are no longer kept in the building of the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, but in the  Book Repository in Garching and another remote book repository on the edge of the city. Detailed plans for the expansion of the stack and working-place capacities of the building in Ludwigstrasse have long been completed, however, their realisation is currently impossible due to the scarcity of public funds.