Science Research Facilities / Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers

Science Research Facilities / Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers

Courtesy of Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers Courtesy of Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers Courtesy of Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers Courtesy of Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers + 34

  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  8548
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2019
  • Manufacturers Brands with products used in this architecture project
    Manufacturers: Plascon, Federale Stene, Graphisoft, Gyproc Saint-Gobain, Kirk Marketing, KlipTite, Polyflor, SIKA South Africa, Union Tiles
  • Architect In Charge: Ludwig Hansen Architects, Urban Designers
  • Clients: University of Mpumalanga
  • Project Manager: University of Mpumalanga & GladAfrica Project Management
  • Contractor: Trencon
  • Landscape Architect: kwpCreate
  • Structural Engineer: SKCM Engineers
  • Laboratory Consultant: Safe-T
  • Cost Consultant: SBDS Quantity Surveyors
  • Civil Engineer: Delta Built Environment Consultants
  • Mechanical Engineer: Aurecon
  • Electrical Engineer: PLP Consulting Engineers
  • Fire Engineer: Aurecon
  • Wet Services Engineer: Delca Systems
  • Ict Consultant: Implementing IT
  • Av Consultant: Digital Fabric
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Courtesy of Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers
Courtesy of Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers

Text description provided by the architects. Situated on the University of Mpmalanga Lower Campus, the building provides 10 large specialized teaching laboratories, a number of post-graduate and research laboratories, raked and flat teaching venues and staff office spaces. Mpumalanga is a tropical region in the eastern part of South Africa, iconic for its beautiful undulating lush natural landscape and mountainous terrain, with steep slopes and rocky outcrops providing a challenging environment to build in. An existing unused parking platform on the university campus was identified as the extent of the site, a welcome constraint that mitigated surface challenges and guided the edges of the building to limit the impact on the natural environment.

Courtesy of Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers
Courtesy of Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers
Section
Section
Courtesy of Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers
Courtesy of Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers

The design intent of the Science Research Facilities for the University of Mpumalanga was to challenge the conventional learning practices of science within academic institutions which are mostly highly regulated and inaccessible to the curious eye. The building program has been spaced over separated buildings, punctuated by courtyards of various sizes that ensure the building is breathable, light and takes advantage of the climate and natural landscape of the Mpumalanga region, furthermore balancing the enclosed laboratories and open space. The envelope celebrates the program of the various laboratories through generous transparency in the facade whilst still sensitively responding to the climatic and functional requirements of an effective laboratory workspace.

Courtesy of Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers
Courtesy of Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers
Ground floor plan
Ground floor plan
Courtesy of Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers
Courtesy of Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers

By dispersing the building program across the site, new intermediate zones are created through courtyards, lingering thresholds and exposed service rooms, all connected by open covered walkways that wrap around the main courtyard. The programmatic arrangement of this building along the circulation spine exposes the entire procedure of the working nature within a laboratory, which in turn visually opens up the scientific discourse to the public realm. The exterior program takes advantage of the visual connections of the laboratories by providing generous walkways and defined courtyard spaces to encourage people to linger and potentially learn through visual engagement. The courtyards nestled in between the laboratories have been designed as open terraria that exhibit the thriving micro-ecologies of Mpumalanga.

Courtesy of Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers
Courtesy of Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers

A strong groundwater source uncovered during the construction phase is guided through the main courtyard through recessed channels on the ground, further reinforcing the powerful presence of the natural context. The material palette is a selection of honest materials; a warm toned face-brick, off shutter concrete and glazing ensuring the envelope remains in line with the broader campus aesthetic. Terazzo floors continue the sentiment of honest, hardware materials throughout circulation routes, while the doors and joinery made up of locally sourced hardwood timber lend a warmth to the crisp white laboratory interiors.

Courtesy of Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers
Courtesy of Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers

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Project location

Address: Mpumalanga, South Africa

Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
About this office
Cite: "Science Research Facilities / Ludwig Hansen Architects + Urban Designers" 07 Jun 2020. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/940907/science-research-facilities-ludwig-hansen-architects-plus-urban-designers> ISSN 0719-8884

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