Feringa Building › Campus Groningen

Feringa Building

2019 - 2023

Feringa Building

Feringa Building

This will be the Faculty of Science & Engineering’s third new building, after Bernoulliborg and Linnaeusborg. It will replace Nijenborgh 4. The new building will accommodate facilities for some 1400 students and 850 staff. In addition to offices and lecture halls, the building will also comprise a range of special research facilities, including physics, biochemistry and vibration-free labs.

Why a new building?

Construction of Nijenborgh 4 began in 1965 as the primary location for the Faculty of Chemistry. It consists of several large building blocks which are connected by long walkways.

Many of the installations and building components are now approaching the end of their technical lifespan and the building no longer meets today’s high standards. After several incidents the University decided to take measures. The University was faced with the choice between substantially renovating Nijenborgh 4 or replacing it with a new building. After thorough research (cost/benefit analysis) the decision was taken to build a new modern building for Nijenborgh 4, in two phases.
After the Bernoulliborg and Linnaeusborg buildings, this will be the third new building for the Faculty of Science and Engineering. In March 2014 the University decided to name the new building Feringa Building.

New Building: Feringa Building

The new building (53.000 square metres) will be one of the largest construction projects in the Netherlands and will house some 1.400 students and 850 staff members. Alongside offices and teaching rooms, the building will also house a wide range of specialized laboratories, including physics, chemistry, low-vibration and engineering labs.

Teaching and research

The Feringa Building will house a bachelor and master degree programmes in Physics, Chemistry, Astronomy and Industrial Engineering & Management Science. In addition, the following research institutes will be located here: Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials, GBB* – Groningen Biomolecular Sciences and Biotechnology Institute,  ITM – Research Institute of Technology and Management, Stratingh Institute for Chemistry **, CTN – Centre for Theoretical Physics and Kapteyn Institute / SRON – Netherlands Institute for Space Research. ESRIG will be located in the Energy Academy Europe, but a close relationship with Zernike will be remained by a connection between the two buildings.

Sustainable building

The new building promises to be very sustainable. The key focus is on a flexible and future-proof building, the use of long-life materials and a small environmental footprint. The aim is to achieve the BREEAM-NL Very Good level at the very least. If possible, we will aim for the Excellent-label in de Design phase. More info? Visit external website or My University

Update June 2019: Initial construction phase of Feringa Building to start on 1 July

On 1 July, contractor Ballast Nedam will start the first construction phase of the new Feringa Building of the University’s Faculty of Science and Engineering. The building on Zernike Campus will take the form of three connected V-shaped wings and will provide space for around 1,400 students and 850 staff members.

The implementation of the foundations will mark the start of the construction phase in early July. Since the building work will take place next to the current building, construction will be carried out with as little vibration and noise nuisance as possible. The pile foundations will be constructed by boring holes into the ground, reinforcing them and then pouring concrete into them. This method of installing the pile foundations will result in much less nuisance than would driving the piles into the ground, although this method does mean that there will be more construction traffic, including concrete mixers.

Around 2,000 concrete screw piles will be made for the foundation of the Feringa Building, starting on the south end of the construction site.

Construction schedule

The construction process will proceed in phases (see image). Phase 1A will be fully completed by mid-2021, to allow the first research groups of the Faculty to take up residence in the Feringa Building. Next, Phase 1B will be completed, after which sections 17 and 18 of the Nijenborgh 4 building will be demolished to make space for the implementation of Phase 2. This will start at the beginning of 2022, to be completed in the summer of 2023.

Building phases of the Feringa Building
Building phases of the Feringa Building

Update 2017: University of Groningen withdraws call for tenders for Feringa Building

The Board of the University of Groningen has decided to stop seeking a contractor for the new Feringa Building on the Zernike Campus. Continuation of the procedure will lead to too large a gap between the project budget and the sums which contractors are expected to bid. This is the conclusion reached by the UG. The result is that the plan must be significantly modified, and a new procurement effort will have to be launched.

‘Obviously we regret having to take this decision’, says Jan de Jeu, Vice President of the Board, ‘but we came to the conclusion that, given the current economic context, the selected call for tenders did not generate enough competition.’ In consultation with the Faculty of Science and Engineering and all parties involved, we will have to see what this means for the timeline of the project. We believe it is possible to adapt the construction process in such a way that further delays will be limited.’

Impression of backside Feringa Building
Impression of backside Feringa Building
Terraces and facade west
Terraces and facade west
Entrance to the Atrium
Entrance to the Atrium