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Bogle Architects completes laser research centre in Czech Republic

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The doors have opened on the new £40million ELI Beamlines international Laser Research Centre near Prague designed by Bogle Architects

The building in Dolni Breznay is the first of three research centres for high-powered laser experimentation funded by the European Commission. The facility houses lasers with intensities ten times higher than those currently available in Europe.

They will be used for research into material sciences and engineering, medicine, biology and astrophysics.

Across four buildings, the 25,000m² scheme accommodates office space, laboratories, a multi-functional auditorium/lecture space and café.

The building is constructed using high quality materials selected for longevity, low maintenance and contemporary style. Inside, the architects have sought to provide as many instances as possible for researchers to interact and communicate with generous atria and bridges linking spaces.

According to the practice, which was set up three years ago following BFLS’ split, the sensitivity and high calibration of the laser facility has resulted in some walls, floors and ceilings being 1.5m thick to provide adequate electro magnetic pulse protection.

UK-based landscape designers Gillespies also worked on the scheme.

Architect’s view

‘Won in international competition the design has been conceived as a research campus within a landscaped setting and consists of four separate buildings, accommodating offices, laboratories, a multifunctional space with lecture theatre and a café and the principal element - a massive concrete ‘box’, comparable in size to a football pitch, housing the laser hall itself.

‘A lightweight roof floats over the atrium or ‘heart’ of the building, with louvres providing shade during the summer whilst allowing sun to penetrate and heat the atrium during the winter.

ELI Beamlines Research Facility - Sketch

ELI Beamlines Research Facility - Sketch

Project Data

Architects: Bogle Architects
Location: Prague
Type Of Project: Office/Research
Structural Engineers: Nemec Polak
Civil Engineering: AED Project
Design Team: Bogle Architects
Client: Fyzikální ústav Akademie věd ČR, v.v.i. Institute of Physics, Academy of Sciences, Czech Republic
Funding: Public - EU
Tender date: Preparatory Phase - 25 July 2011 published, 16 September 2011 bid deadline
Start on site date: Preparatory Phase - September 2012 Main Phase - July 2013
Contract duration: Preparatory Phase (site clearance and pit excavation) - 11 months + Main Phase - anticipated 30 months (partial completion and occupation after 24 months (October 2015)).
Gross internal floor area: 29,500m² NIA - 24,920 m²
Form of contract: Public tender
Total cost: 1.5 Billion CZK (Estimate)
M&E consultant: PBA International
Quantity surveyor: Gleeds
Lighting consultant: GiaEQUATION
Landscape consultant: Gillespies - UK
Main contractor: MVO

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