The new build for the Biologicum is divided into four parallel elongated structures, which towards the west connect to a main circulation axis running in a north-south direction in a comb-like formation. The animal house is located to the east. A hall stretching across all levels of the main axis is glazed towards the west and allows views into the courtyards between the elongated wings offering wonderful views towards the Taunus mountain range. At ground level, transparent lateral sections generate the intimate ambience of a garden courtyard.
Research institutes with increased safety requirements are accommodated on the three upper levels of the parallel wings. These storeys are designed with a double-depth layout with offices oriented towards the south and laboratories on the opposite side facing north. Student training rooms are located on the ground floor and in the basement of the elongated wings. A student training room each, which is strongly associated to research, is situated on every laboratory level at the elongated wing, but is accessible from the main circulation axis.
The northern façade of the Biologicum on Max-von-Laue-Straße takes reference from the urban proportions and façade structures defined by the existing institutes. The buildings’ slightly turned position creates a narrow urban forecourt, which offers views from in-between the institutes towards Frankfurt’s skyline in the south.
Contrary to the completely glazed public circulation zone, the façades in front of laboratories and offices are designed with partly solid, partly glazed elements with a vertical emphasis, which reinforce the verticality of the upright window formats in contrast to the building’s length. The solid parts of the exterior walls, such as the gables and ceilings, are made from red fair-faced concrete, just as the interior walls and ceilings of the main circulation axis. Altogether, the amount of glass used for the exterior walls is less than 40 percent, thus meeting current energy requirements.