Located on the urban fringe of Copenhagen in Kastrup, the site for the new headquarters for Ferring Pharmaceuticals A/S occupies a pivotal waterfront position alongside the Øresund crossing between Copenhagen and Malmö, and is next to Copenhagen International Airport. Bordered by predominantly low-rise development, it affords fantastic views towards Malmö and the Swedish coast – where the company was founded.
The building sits on a large stone plinth which acts as the first line of defence against floods and integrates the design of street furniture and landscape elements. The lightweight glass building ‘floats’ above, in contrast to the heavy plinth below. The six stacked floors and roof canopy cantilever out to further capture the surrounding views and create self-shaded spaces on each floor. The triangular form of the building is driven by the shape of the site, surrounded by water on all sides. At the heart of the building is a generous internal atrium with panoramic views, comprising an entrance lobby, café and break-out space, as well as catered conference facilities and space for social events. Access to the floors above is via a feature staircase or glass lifts that further animate the atrium space.
The layout of the interior spaces was derived from in-depth studies of Ferring’s way of working. Through observation and targeted interviews, the design team gained valuable insight into the processes involved in the development of pharmaceutics, creating workspaces that are tailored to the company’s specific requirements. Offices and laboratories – for quiet, individual work – are situated on the edges, to take advantage of the views and natural light, while more collaborative meeting spaces are located towards the centre, overlooking the top-lit atrium and other social spaces creating a vibrant core of the building throughout each level.
The building façade has a very strong horizontal emphasis, in consonance with the surrounding low-rise urban fabric. The technical plant and building cores are incorporated into the cantilevering roof form, giving it a sleek profile. The geometry of the atrium roof is a form-found, glazed catenary gridshell, reflecting the forces acting upon it, allowing for thin, lightweight structural members. Daylight streams into the interior spaces, creating a light-filled, unique workplace that brings the whole range of Ferring’s activities under one roof.