NOVO NORDISK NATURE PARK

ARCHITECTS
Henning Larsen Arcitects og SLA
PROJECT
Novo Nordisk Nature Park
DEVELOPER
Novo Nordisk
WHERE AND WHEN
Novo Nordisk headquarters, Bagsværd, Denmark, 2011-14
MILFORD PRODUCTS/SYSTEMS
StrataCells

GREEN ENVIRONMENTS MAKE FOR EMPLOYEE WELL-BEING
Novo Nordisk Nature Park, the 'green' framework for the company’s new international headquarters in Bagsvaerd, is about 31.000 m² in size – equivalent to about four soccer fields. The park area is designed to resemble forests and natural areas typically seen in Denmark. It reflects Denmark's topography with numerous biotopes, including 50 different species of trees to support biodiversity. The area offers an informal natural environment for the employees, letting them conduct"walking meetings" and enjoy views of the greenery (in and of itself, that provides a relaxing effect). The park area is not reserved for employees – it is open to the public. Everyone is welcome to walk the white trails winding through the area's varying habitats.

TREES PLANTED DIRECTLY ON TOP OF AN UNDERGROUND PARKING GARAGE
Some of the park’s trees are planted directly on top of an underground parking garage holding 400 cars. To ensure the survival of the trees here on the less-than-friendly concrete and slate roof, StrataCells from Milford were used. StrataCells are environmentally friendly soil cells that are inserted into cutouts in the concrete and then filled with special loam soil. Soil cells establish underground 'islands' in the concrete where tree roots can spread out for water even though there is no solid layer of soil. This ensures their natural and healthy growth. Slate was affixed on top of the concrete. The openings for the trees in the surface are barely one square metre.

THE STRATA CELLS MADE IT POSSIBLE
“Without the StrataCells, there would be a risk that the trees would sink and the surface would crack under heavy traffic,” explains Kim Bøge, manager of landscape architects Skælskør Anlægsgartnere. "The cells provide support for the surface layer. In addition to withstanding heavy traffic, the soil cells provide a sufficient amount of soil for the trees. The soil cells are low density, which is necessary when planting trees on top of an underground parking garage. If a large soil carrier layer is too heavy, there is a risk the roof mightcollapse. All rain water from the buildings and the park area is collected, and the park is sized to withstand the worst torrential rain, a so-called once-in-a-century event. Thirsty trees in particular absorb much of the excess water.