Bridging the gap between office and science – Bayer BioScience Gent
The Innovation Center for plant biotechnology located in Zwijnaarde is one of the major research & development centres of the Bayer CropScience division of Bayer AG. It provides sustainable, plant-based solutions for the agricultural, health, nutrition and industrial sectors mainly through modern plant breeding. At eld, we are experienced in bringing fully integrated, innovative and sustainable architectural and engineering services to industries which require specific expertise in the design and construction of state-of-the-art research and development laboratories.
When Bayer AG approached eld to manage several building projects for them, we decided to push the boundaries of industrial design using aesthetically strong solutions that contribute to the improvement of the neighbouring community. Our responsibilities included: housing headquarters offices, laboratories, greenhouses, conference & meeting room facilities, restaurant, kitchen, and an underground car park.
Challenges & solutions
At BioScience, the focus lies on modern plant breeding. Our biggest challenge was to come up with a flexible mechanism with a simple structure, allowing the quick adaptation of single units and their plants to space, nutrition, light, humidity, etc… Although the structure may look like a simple greenhouse, techniques used at BioScience are strictly regulated and extremely complex. The second challenge was to bridge the gap between two buildings and departments: science and office. It was by installing all communal services in the office building, and connecting the two building through an atrium, that we were able to stimulate social interaction of the staff.