Architect(s) : C.F. Møller Architects
Address : Nordre Ringgade 1, AARHUS, Denmark
Latitude/Longitude : 56.16804728679215,10.203023868695283
Client : Danish Ministry of Education
Size : 200,000 m²
Landscape : C. Th. Sørensen
Prizes : 1st prize in competition, 1931
Text description provided by the architects. The University of Aarhus, which dates from 1931, is a unique and coherent university campus with consistent architecture, homogenous use of yellow brickwork and adaptation to the landscape. The university has won renown and praise as an integrated complex which unites the best aspects of functionalism with solid Danish traditions in form and materials.
The competition for the university was won by the architects Kay Fisker, C. F. Møller og Povl Stegmann in 1931. Stegmann left the partnership in 1937, Fisker in 1942 and C. F. Møller Architects has been in charge of the continued architectural development and building design of the university until today.
The University of Aarhus, with its extensive park in central Aarhus, includes teaching rooms, offices, libraries, workshops and student accommodation. The university has a distinct homogeneous building style and utilises the natural contours of the landscape. The campus has emerged around a distinct moraine gorge and the buildings for the departments and faculties are placed on the slopes, from the main buildings alongside the ring road to the center of the city at Nørreport. All throughout the campus, the buildings are variations of the same clear-cut prismatic volume with pitched roofs, oriented orthogonally to form individual architectural clusters sharing the same vocabulary. The way the buildings emerge from the landscape makes them seem to grow from it, rather than being superimposed on the site.
The original scheme for the campus park was made by the famous Danish landscape architect C. Th. Sørensen. Until the death of C. Th. Sørensen in 1979 the development of the park areas were conducted in a close cooperation between C. Th. Sørensen, C. F. Møller and the local park authorities. Since 1979 C. F. Møller Architects – in cooperation with the staff at the university – has continued the intentions of the original scheme for the park, and today the park is a beautiful, green area and an immense contribution to both the university and the city in general.
In 2001, C. F. Møller Architects prepared a new masterplan for the long and short term development of the university. Although the university has been extended continuously for more than 75 years, the original masterplan and design principles have been maintained, and have proven a simple yet versatile tool to create a timeless and coherent architectural expression adaptable to changing programs. Today, the university is officially recognized as a Danish national architectural treasure and is internationally renowned as an excellent example of early modern university campus planning.
Contributed by C.F. Møller Architects