MAX IV Laboratory

Snøhetta’s landscape design for the MAX IV Laboratory




MAX IV Laboratory
© ABML4

Located in the city of Lund insouthern Sweden, the MAX IV Laboratory Landscape is designed with the aim of creating a functional landscape solution for the high-performance synchrotron radiation laboratory MAX IV.

MAX IV Laboratory
© ABML4

MAX IV is a national laboratory operated jointly by the Swedish Research Council and Lund University. The synchrotron facility is created by FOJAB architects, and Snøhetta has designed the 19 hectares landscape park. MAX IV was officially opened on June 21st 2016.

MAX IV Laboratory
Photo © Mikal Schlosser

The landscape design is based on a set of unique parameters to support the performance of the laboratory research, including measures such as mitigating ground vibrations from nearby highways, storm water management, and meeting the city’s ambitious sustainability goals.

MAX IV Laboratory
Photo © Mikal Schlosser

The MAX IV is the first part of a larger transformation of the area northeast of Lund aiming to turn agricultural land into a ‘Science City’. The creation of a new, green public park rather than a fenced, introverted research center makes a difference in the public realm.

MAX IV Laboratory
Photo © Mikal Schlosser

The MAX IV site is a green site, and the image of the meadow vegetation on sloping hills as a recreational area is setting a new standard for research facilities’ outdoor areas. MAX IV has been a collaborative process together with the client, consultants and construction developer.

MAX IV Laboratory
Photo © Mikal Schlosser

The development of the landscape architecture design is based on four important criteria:

MAX IV Laboratory
Photo © Mikal Schlosser

1 – Mitigating ground vibrations: Testing led by researchers and engineers revealed that traffic on the neighboring highway (E22) was causing ground vibrations that could influence the experiments in the laboratories.

MAX IV Laboratory
Photo © Mikal Schlosser

By creating slopes and a more chaotic surface, the amount of ground vibrations has been reduced.

MAX IV Laboratory
Photo © Snøhetta

2 – Mass balance: With focus on optimizing the reuse of the excavated masses on site, a cut and fill strategy was employed. This secures the option of reversing the land to agricultural use when the synchrotron is no longer on site.

MAX IV Laboratory
Photo © Snøhetta

By uploading the digital 3D model directly into the GPS-controlled bulldozers, we were able to relocate the masses to their final position in one operations, and no masses were transported off site.

MAX IV Laboratory
Photo © Snøhetta

3 – Storm water management: The city planning department of Lund restricts the quantity of water permitted to run into the city’s pipelines, and water management inside the site’s boundaries.

MAX IV Laboratory
Photo © Mikal Schlosser

Dry and wet ponds are therefore designed for both the 1-year and the 100-year storm water.

MAX IV Laboratory
Photo © Mikal Schlosser

4 – Plant selection and maintenance: The discovery of the nearby natural reserve area at Kungsmarken made it possible to use a selection of natural species by harvesting hay and spreading it on the new, hilly landscape.

MAX IV Laboratory
Photo © Snøhetta

The maintenance strategy includes a combination of grazing sheep and conventional machines suitable for meadow-land. Source and photo Courtesy by Snøhetta.

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