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Henning Larsen beats stars to land mega-lab contest

Copenagen-based Henning Larsen Architects has seen off competition from, among others, big name British practices to claim the largest science scheme in Europe

Team Henning Larsen, which includes fellow Danish firms Cobe and SLA and UK’s engineers Buro Happold, will design the European Spallation Source (ESS) research centre in southern Sweden.

The new facility will be a home for at least 5,000 people carrying out materials research and life science from 2019.

A team led by London-headquartered Foster + Partners made the five-strong shortlist for the project but got no further.

Meanwhile HOK, which has a London office, was part of a Bjarke Ingels Group-led consortium (BIG) that was chosen as joint winner of the contest but not awarded the contract. British-based engineering stars AKTII

ESS said BIG and Henning Larsen received the same score for aesthetic values, but the latter received the highest score for functionality, flexibility, cost and proposed collaboration model.

Colin Carlile, chief executive of ESS, said: ‘The flexibility, human scale and campus-like layout of the work submitted by Henning Larsen Architects will give us an excellent base for developing a functional and variable work-place.’

The full shortlist:

  • Bethem Crouwel, West8, Arup, Mandaworks
  • Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG), HOK International Limited, AKTII, Topotek1/man made land
  • Foster + Partners, Peter Walker and Partners, Research Facilities Design, Ramboll Group, Berg/CF Moller Architects
  • Henning Larsen Architects, Buro Happold, COBE ApS, SLA A/S, NNE Pharmaplan A/S
  • Tengbom and Mecanoo Architecten

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