Ivory towers of research and teaching are a thing of the past. The future is bringing science cities to the world, providing an important outlet for the social and economic development of urban spaces, and enabling participation in scientific knowledge across all of society. Science cities are complex learning ecosystems in which various knowledge-makers, business sectors, administrations and civil society all benefit from mutual interactions. Contemporary science cities are characterised by highly networked locations integrated into urban centres, which stand in stark contrast to the traditional, historically grown campus facilities of most universities and research institutes. In science cities, educational and research institutions are closely linked to innovation parks, residential areas, green spaces, squares and other services, such as those offered by health centres.
Science City Bahrenfeld’s innovation model extends beyond campus spaces, and includes the expanded environment and existing buildings and infrastructure. In short, Science City Bahrenfeld will turn the entire urban area into a vibrant campus. What’s more, the sustainable use of existing resources ― with cleverly networked mobility systems and short distances to green and recreational areas ― will play an increasingly important role as Science City Bahrenfeld develops, with the Volkspark at the centre.
Quality of life for the brightest of minds
With such a founding philosophy, it is no doubt that Science City Bahrenfeld will attract the best and brightest students, academics and researchers, all of whom will benefit from the area’s outstanding research infrastructure. This mix will create ideal conditions for lectures in chemistry, physics and biology as well as in teacher training. More than 5,000 students will benefit from modern lecture halls and laboratories ― interactive learning areas for individual and group workplaces, equipped with state-of-the-art media technology, will create excellent meeting spaces for testing out new teaching and learning concepts. In the future, the disciplinary and interdisciplinary university study programs in chemistry, physics and nanosciences can finally be offered in one place.
In order to aid this vision, it is crucial that campus life be well integrated into Science City Bahrenfeld as supplementary networked campus facilities are built up and expanded around the existing research campus. This means greater connection will be required. The future campus will provide a coordinated system to connect the existing research institutions with large parts of the University of Hamburg’s MIN (mathematics, informatics and natural sciences) departments, while an expanded and unique range of public communication and meeting spaces will be created.
For example, DESY will be celebrated by a circular, tree-lined avenue directly above its underground particle accelerator. Called the ‘PETRA Ring’, this avenue will create a new continuous pathway from the eastern campus to Lise-Meitner-Park as well as additional green space, room for new university buildings, communal areas and public squares, a learning centre, and a cafeteria. A high-line and pedestrian bridge will connect the eastern and western parts of the campus.
At the same time, Luruper Chaussee will become the backbone of the campus, both the east and west sides. It will house the Innovation Center for new technologies and startups, entrances to gardens and the Volkspark, open squares and public spaces, connection to public transportation, a sports centre, space for small businesses, shops and restaurants, as well as various other scientific buildings.
With so many amenities and opportunities in Science City Bahrenfeld, it is clear that an intelligent mobility system will be necessary to make these campus facilities a sustainable part of Hamburg’s lived urban plan. Therefore, plans for a new possible access point to the rapid transit system on Luruper Chaussee, connections to modern mobility hubs, and innovative transport concepts on campus ― such as bus shuttle systems ― are all underway to better connect Science City Bahrenfeld and to reduce motorised individual traffic. Attractive cycling networks and car-free public spaces support the goal of ‘Campus on foot!’
All of these connection plans not only ensure exchange and synergy between DESY, the university and other research institutes, but also set new priorities for urban life on campus. Important paths, avenues and roads connect surrounding city spaces and bring knowledge-culture to campus life.