Science Park Linz, Austria Building, Project, Photo, News, Design, Image

Science Park Linz, Austria

Johannes Kepler University Development design by Caramel Architekten

21 Dec 2011

Science Park Linz Building 2 – Johannes Kepler University

Date built: 2011

Design: Caramel Architekten

Images by Hertha Hurnaus:

Science Park Linz: Johannes Kepler University Austria

Project Description

Science Park Linz, Building 2, Upper Austria

Two years after the opening of building 1 and with roughly one year to go until building 3 is completed, the johannes kepler university in linz has inaugurated building 2 of the new, ultra-modern science park, an architecturally eye-catching ensemble equipped with state-of-the-art technology.

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As in building 1, the interplay of angles and bends in the overall building, outer shell, and interior spaces has been extended seamlessly to this structure, however, in building 2 not only the axes but the slopes of the roof are affected. As viewed from the south, building 1 angles to the left, whereas building 2 bends off to the right.

At first the roof takes a slightly downward slope, but toward the north it slants steeply upward from the bend. The rear edge of building 2 rises a full story above its older brother. as in building 1, the special-purpose spaces on the ground floor merge into the terrain at the north end, and the surfaces have been planted with vegetation.

Whereas almost two thirds of building 1 seem to hover above the ground, building 2 stands firmly on a two-story base that houses a number of seminar rooms.

Vertical connection channels “pierce” the upper floor space, flooding the circulation and combizone with light and offering communication opportunities, meeting areas, and a modern “science-work climate” for:

– the institute of plastics engineering
– the mathematics and statistics departments
– the radon institute of the austrian academy of sciences
– mathconsult gmbh
– the recendt research center for non-destructive testing gmbh
– and the kompetenzzentrum holz gmbh

Architect’s statement

Communication comes first

This means establishing ties with the existing university campus, the adjacent residential buildings, and the natural surroundings and allowing a rapport between each of the new buildings as well as within the building units themselves. In a seemingly playful way the buildings interact both in plan and section with their surroundings and the adjacent residential buildings via height differences and bends and in this way avoid an inflexible building structure. By crouching into the slope and having the entrance area beneath the street level, they establish a ground-floor link to the existing university campus.

The landscape flows into the grounds – between, over, and through the structures with their partially hovering office wings – and merges with the buildings, forming a new interpretation of the campus.

The spacious interior atria tie the floors together and allow light to flood this space all the way down to the lower floors, in this way inspiring a new science-work climate of communication.

Due to the large spans and the partially necessary bridge constructions or the resulting deflections, the parapets are not arranged randomly; instead, the largest ones have been placed to precisely coincide with the points of greatest deflection. In this way the outward impression is diversified, while the interior is marked by heightened individuality, thus creating an interplay that is enhanced by the use of lamellae of varying thicknesses which have been set at various intervals.

Ultimately, even the individual elements of the façade communicate with each other…

caramel architects


Science Park Linz at Johannes Kepler University


Design: Caramel Architekten

Images by Hertha Hurnaus added 29 Sep 2009:

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Project Description

The program involved designing several individual buildings which would be interwoven as well as tied to the existing University of Linz campus. The plan was to take into consideration the neighboring residential buildings as well as the natural form of the slope and the katabatic winds, which play an important role in keeping the city cool, and the poor condition of the building lot was not to be overlooked either.

With the erection of the “Science Park” in the immediate vicinity of the Johannes Kepler University the objective was to bring together economy and research and draw research expertise to Linz. In keeping with the standards of a modern scientific working climate particular attention was paid to creating open areas between the uniform structures, thus creating spaces to encourage exchange and activity.

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In order to avoid an inflexible grid structure, straight lines were bent, thus also making full use of the grounds. In this way a more relaxed structure and a better distribution of the different spatial situations were created.

To plan both outdoor and indoor spatial situations that could potentially serve as meeting points the individual elongated blocks were conceived as two-part buildings. The glazed central area not only allows daylight to enter the lower levels via a large indoor hall but also creates communicative zones.

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Finally, the horizontal bending of the elongated blocks arose out of consideration to the existing structures. Moreover, the height of the building corresponds to the upper edge of the slope to the north and at the same time to the eaves of the residential buildings to the south. The subsequent bend in the buildings on the south side, however, results not only out of consideration to the neighbors but plays with the front edge, which, as seen along with all the building sections as a whole, ultimately modulates the overall form.

All in all, it was essential for the project to “crouch” into the landscape. This is why part of the slope was removed to make way for the basement, which houses the special rooms like laboratories and workshops and connects the individual building sections.

Above this, hover the office wings between which the landscape flows into the grounds – a measure which was used to overcome the difficult task of tying the new structures to the existing campus, although these two areas are separated by a heavily used road (Altenbergerstraße). On the Science Park side, the grounds have been recessed enough so that one enters the underpass at ground level, following along a gradually sloping ramp that leads through the Park straight up to the buildings on the university campus side. In this way, the connection is at least in part at ground level.

Construction images from Aug 2009:
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Above this level 0, as it were, extends the cantilevered structure of the first building element (Mechatronik), which forms the actual entranceway to the Science Park.

Due to its enormous span and the deflection, the unit has been designed as a bridge structure, in which two massive cores support a 160-meter-long steel truss frame.

The design of the façade also conforms to the structural system of the truss frame. The parapets are not arranged randomly but have been placed to coincide with the points of greatest deflection. In this way the outward impression is diversified while the interior is marked by greater individuality. A fascinating tension, the effect of which is intensified by the arrangement of the lamellae at different levels and intervals.

Construction images from Aug 2009:
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Science Park Linz – Building Information

Science Park Linz Building Phase 1 Construction Unit MECHATRONIK
NUA 14,654 m2
NUA incl. underground garage 18,521 m2
GFS 16,509 m2
GFS incl. underground garage 20,094 m2

Science Park Linz Building Phases 2-4 total
NUA 36,894 m2
NUA incl. underground garage 48,810 m2
GFS 39,796 m2
GFS incl. underground garage 52,218 m2

Construction Unit 1: MECHATRONIK

Ground floor: entrance foyer and specialty rooms (research laboratories)
Upper levels 1-5: office spaces

Construction unit: 22 million euros without underpass
Total: according to competition: 70-80 million euros

start of construction: 2nd quarter 2007
completion of construction unit 1: 4th quarter 2009

Contracting party, client: BIG
User: johannes kepler university, linz

Planners involved in the project:
Chief planner: caramel architekten ZT gmbh
Subcontractors (hired by the chief planner):
Structural engineering: werkraum ZT gmbh, vienna
Building services: planungsgruppe grünbichler
Electrical planning: planungsgruppe grünbichler
Building physics: ZT krückl, perg

Subcontractors (hired directly by BIG):
Geotechnical engineering, site investigation: bodenprüfstelle, linz
Hydrology: machowetz, linz
Transportation planning: TB kubisch, steyr

Construction images from Aug 2009:
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images from Caramel Architekten

Science Park Linz images / information from Caramel Architekten

Caramel Architekten

Location: Linz, Austria

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