The University of Amsterdam is building the downtown campus on en around the Binnengasthuisterrein. The University library is part of the downtown campus. The downtown campus is situated in the oldest part of the city of Amsterdam, it is not surprising that the building of the University Library consists of several monumental buildings. The building was originally a hospital with housing for nurses. At any given time the building is used as a teaching building. With the renovation the teaching function is maintained, but a library function is added. The hospital and nurses house are positioned in a triangle to one another, resulting in a courtyard.

The courtyard will be covered with a glass roof in the shape of a tree, forming an atrium.