Germany's Max Planck Society is one step closer to opening its first institute outside of Europe. While the Max Planck Florida Institute is currently operating in a temporary facility, construction on its 100,000-square-foot laboratory and office building on six acres at Florida Atlantic University's John D. MacArthur Campus in Jupiter, Florida began on June 22, 2010 when Dr. Peter Gruss, President of the Society, hosted the official groundbreaking ceremony for the new facility with more than 250 guests celebrating the occasion. On April 7, 2011, community leaders joined the institute's board members and scientists in the topping out ceremony.
Designed by the Washington, DC office of ZGF Architects LLP (ZGF), the new research facility for the Max Planck Florida Institute will provide a state-of-the-art home for the scientists and research teams. The building is designed to accommodate nearly 58,000-square-feet of laboratory space that will house wet and dry bench research, instrumentation labs, computational research, core imaging facilities and microscope suites, information technology services and offices for researchers and support staff.
The scientific facilities will be organized into three research wings, including guest labs to facilitate collaborative research with the scientific community in the field. Conference rooms, a 100-seat auditorium, lounges and administration offices are centrally located around an open lobby that connects all three floor levels. A large atrium is directly connected to an outdoor terrace on the second floor and provides a central gathering space. Building features also include tropical landscaping, outdoor seating, a 230-space surface parking lot and pedestrian-friendly pathways connecting the Max Planck Florida Institute to neighboring buildings on the FAU campus.
Facts at a Glance
The Max Planck Florida Institute will set a high standard for sustainable laboratory design in South Florida, consuming the least amount of energy possible. Laboratory and office spaces have large windows facing due north for maximum daylight, and south-facing offices have external sunshades calibrated to provide ample daylight while minimizing heat and glare. All areas include an air-conditioning zoning strategy that reduces loads. There are also mechanical systems with state-of-the-art energy recovery wheels to capture useable energy from building exhaust. Another feature is the recycling of moisture removed in the process of dehumidification that contributes to the building's cooling system. Additionally, landscaping will be drought-tolerant native species and irrigation will be provided by a municipal reclaimed water system.
The Max Planck Florida Institute has selected the joint-venture partnership of The Weitz Company and DPR Construction, Inc. as construction manager. The financial and professional services firm, Jones Lang LaSalle Americas, Inc., will serve as the program manager to oversee development and construction for the project.