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Start of construction of the largest wooden building in Slovenia

  • 17. 7. 2020

As part of the Innorenew CoE project, which Regional Development Agency of the Ljubljana Urban Region (RRA LUR) is partner in, grounbreaking ceremony in Izola, Livade celebrated the start of construction of new InnoRenew complex. Among other high-ranking guests, Zdravko Počivalšek, Minister of Economic Development and Technology, and Dr Simona Kustec, Minister of Education, Science and Sport, attended the celebratory event. 

The new InnoRenew CoE complex is arising in Livade, Izola. When complete, two interconnected buildings will cover 8,200 square meters of offices and research laboratories. These buildings, designed by architects Eva Prelovšek Niemelä and Arne Niemelä together with scientists from InnoRenew CoE, will be built both according to verified principles of contemporary sustainable building construction and ideas from the institute’s researchers that have not yet been verified “live”. The buildings will consist of a hybrid combination of timber, concrete and steel, and the entire building complex will be continuously monitored by scientists to see how it works; therefore, it will itself be an ongoing research project.

“Here a research centre with state-of-the-art equipment will grow and, above all, with an excellent international and interdisciplinary team, which will be able to make big breakthroughs in Slovenian, European and global wood science areas,” said Dr Andreja Kutnar, InnoRenew CoE director, to highlight the significance of the complex beyond its status as the largest wooden building in Slovenia.

Moreover, Dr Kutnar emphasized the importance of society’s transition to a circular economy, which the wood industry certainly enables, and the transfer of research knowledge into industrial practice. The fact that researchers and industry representatives work closely together under one roof is a radical mental leap for Slovenia, and this is of great importance for Dr Kutnar.

“Our new wooden building will become a crossroads of efforts to transfer research knowledge into industrial practice as we will be able to effectively connect research and development, equipment and knowledge with the development capacities of the wood industry and other related industries in one place,” she noted. “We will be able to organize additional important events for the popularization of science, development and innovation, and, in cooperation with policy makers and political decision makers, we will be able to co-create favourable conditions for the development of wood science.”

The event ended with creation of a wooden tree, which symbolizes that the key to success is cooperation, partnerships, and joint efforts for progress. In Innorenew CoE project the Regional Development Agency of the Ljubljana Urban Region (RRA LUR) is cooperating with nine partners: University of Primorska, Fraunhofer WKI, Institute for the Protection of Cultural Heritage of Slovenia, Slovenian National Building and Civil Engineering Institute, University of Maribor, Pulp and Paper Institute, Zavod eOblak, National Institute of Public Health and Innorenew CoE research institute.