Building Types Online


Resources from Birkhäuser, leading specialist publisher for architecture, based in Basel, Switzerland, and from Bauwelt, Germany’s leading architectural journal

Content from professional book publications on building typology of the last 15 years.

Case Studies and Articles selected and written by international authors.

1,400 case studies and thematic articles, 6,300 floor plans, sections, elevations and other drawings, 2,700 photographs.

Building types to date include housing, schools and kindergartens, offices, industrial buildings, research and technology buildings, museums, churches, libraries and hospitals.

Strong focus on residential buildings with many international examples.

First released in 2016, the database is now in use at 108 schools of architecture in 27 countries.

New case studies and building types added annually

Editor-in-Chief, Professor Oliver Heckmann of Singapore University of Technology and Design, author of the leading reference book on residential design, Floor Plan Manual Housing.


All texts written by internationally renowned authors in architecture and leading authorities in their fields, among them Peter G. Rowe on housing, Paul von Naredi-Rainer on museum buildings and Mark Dudek on schools.

Detailed and in-depth descriptions and analyses, thorougly checked and edited by the publisher’s editorial department.

Complete content consistently tagged with a wide range of metadata, allowing fast and precise searches with specific parameters.

Database accessible by extensive search and browse functions that respond systematically to the needs of building type design.

Architectural drawings based on documents from the design practices and optimized for high-end printing standards.

Many vector-based plans, accessible electronically here for the first time and available for download.

Click on the images to view free sample projects

Swiss Cottage School, London

Housing Complex Tokiostrasse, Vienna

National Library of China, Beijing


Refer to the curated content and the expertise of renowned architectural writers.

Search content according to building type, country, architect, decade, height, urban context and other criteria.

Browse content according to your specific interests in building typology, architectural form or urban design.

Understand the design decisions through detailed analyses of case studies.

Save and print the text and the individual plans as PDFs.

Allow simultaneous and unlimited use to all of your employees.


… the careful selection by leading experts and their categorization of projects, together with the intuitive navigation and ease of downloading drawings will quickly transform this database into a first stop search for information about recent buildings.

Janine Henri, Head librarian UCLA, in ARLIS/NA, June 2016


The content of the articles does indeed seem authoritative across the different program types addressed … the case study projects reflect a commendably global scope of geographic distribution … The architects of the project buildings are also commendably diverse in terms of their stature within the profession.

Terrance Goode, Syracuse University, in the Journal of Architectural Education, September 2017


Building Types Online offers easy-to-access digitized content and very thorough documentation of the buildings and projects that it does include. … the projects included have been carefully selected by experts in the field and the documentation for each project has been reviewed by them before being added to the database. …. They truly understand the needs of the researcher and how they might approach looking for information.

Barbara Opar, architecture librarian at Syracuse University, in Art Libraries Journal, 46 (1), 2021.