The Experimentarium science centre in Copenhagen needed more space and wanted to make its activities more visible in the public space. However, this needed to happen within the footprint of the existing building, a former bottling plant, which meant that the only way to extend was by building inwards and upwards.
We completely reorganised the building by mixing existing functions with new ones, adding new floors and cutting the building across in two places to insert atriums with eye-catching sculptural staircases. Next, we let the functions break out of the existing structure, so to speak, by stacking a series of aluminium-clad boxes on top of the old building’s calm and stable brick base. The boxes form a dynamic composition, which reflects Experimentarium’s function and the diversity of experiences that it offers.
The copper-clad Helix staircase spirals up through the building and leads visitors onto four floors filled with new experiences. The concept of the staircase was developed during a workshop with Jakob Bohr, professor at DTU Nanotech, as an abstract version of the DNA strand’s structure. The 100m long staircase is built from 160 tons of steel and clad with 10 tons of copper.
CEBRA - Experimentarium. Photo credit: Adam Mørk