Nordic Life Science 1
In order to create architecture for world-class h
ealth research, it is important to design a venue which encourages many opportunities for coming together, transcending different disciplines, from the general public to the research community. exchange and collaboration internally, supporting accessibilty from three different sides in a three dimensional setup, working side-by-side and creating the possibilities for a much more flexible way of expansion, contraction and knowledge sharing under one roof than in a conventional setup, where there is no connectivity between floors and knowledge sharing is trapped in a conventional layout with closed corridors,” says Mandrup Hansen. The goal of the new research facility has also been to build a connection towards the surrounding society and to open the university up towards the city and society at large. “Basically, it’s a research building organized around the idea of communicating its research results to both the international medical society and the general public. Bridging the often closed off campus with the city in a much more open and direct fashion,” explains Mandrup Hansen. A publicly accessible base of the building and a vertical, internal courtyard, with an open oak-clad stairway and strategically placed coffee hotspots that connect all floors is designed to ‘put science on full display’ and to emphasize knowledge sharing in a straightforward and informal way. A parallel objective has been to create a building that will stand out as an identity-creating, sculptural hub for the Panum complex and the university’s Nørre Campus. “The Mærsk Tower is a first in terms of attempting a densified lab facility in a high rise in Denmark, or for that sake in Scandinavia. At the same time, the external aim of the architecture has been to create a sustainable landmark, promoting ‘visible science’ across campus towards the public in a direct dialogue with the city and university in a new and transparent way,” says Mandrup Hansen. To ensure the stable conditions for research in public health science in the 15 storey building, the concrete parts of the building were cast in situ. This ensures compliance with the major anti-vibration requirement, as the building does not sway so easily as other high-rise buildings. “It provides a much more stable and steel enforced structure, than a conventional build-up of steel and concrete components would have achieved. A choice that proved to be right, since it supports the use of sensitive lab equipment on all floors all the way to the top.” The Mærsk Tower is also specifically designed to minimize the usual negative impact of high-rise buildings in a tight urban setting, such as wind gusts and large areas of shade. A challenge that was overcome strategically by pushing the tower back on the site, combined with lower buildings at its base and through an organic shaping of the tower. There are also a vast number of energy efficient features that have been integrated into the design process, to enable an energy consumption of around 50 percent compared to regular research facilities.