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'Hof ter Dampoort',
Dendermondsesteenweg 50,
B-9000 Ghent

t: +32 9 225 54 88

90, boulevard de Waterloo
B-1000 Brussels

t: +32 2 512 70 11
f: +32 2 512 31 90

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Bio-Accelerator for VIB, a life sciences research institute, Gent

New laboratory building puts Flemish bio-technology on the map 

Sum © 2010

When the first stone for the Bio-Accelerator in Ghent was laid on 4 March 2008, the then Minister for Economy, Enterprise, Science, Innovation and Foreign Trade Patricia Ceysens emphasised the importance of research and technology for the future of Flanders as a European top region. The foundation of the Vlaams Instituut voor Biotechnologie (VIB) in 1994 was an important step in the ambition of the Flemish government to actively promote the biotechnology sector. The expansion of the VIB site in Ghent is significant for the growth that biotechnology is still experiencing in Flanders.


A very special working method was used for this specific program. A DBFM (Design-Build-Finance-Maintain) procedure was followed. This led to an enthusiastic collaboration between a team of investors (Vlaamse Investeringsmaatschappij (Flemish investment company), B.S.I. and Foremost Immo) and executors (SumProject, Denys and IPES), led by the project manager Aries.

The Bio-Accelerator building complex is part of the master plan for the Zwijnaarde technology park near Ghent. The master plan strives for a more compact area alternating with green strips. The Bio-Accelerator includes 20,000m² of office and laboratory space for biotechnological research.


In view of the demand for a large number of laboratories, it appeared necessary to design a very sturdy building. It was explicitly decided not to divide this mass, but rather to reinforce it as a whole. To visually unite the different wings of the building and to give the layout a certain lightness, the outer façades were covered with a pattern of punched metal panels. The rhythm of the façades reinforces the layout of the building and differs from the actual building levels. The open space between the various volumes also ensures a certain lightness and variation in perspectives and experience of inside and outside space. By softening the heaviness, the Bio-Accelerator was given a unique identity and it is clearly recognisable to passers-by on the nearby motorways.



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Bioversneller nv
(DG infra+, BSI, Foremost Immo)



in collaboration with

Ingenium nv (technical installations)
Aries (project management)
Dirk Vandekerkhove (landscape)


2007 - 2010
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