Klimatorium: Coastal Meeting Place for the Climate


Photo: Adam Mørk

The Klimatorium is an international center for climate research. The building’s simple and contemporary expression wedges itself into the harbor’s architecture while simultaneously reflecting the tradition of boat building in Lemvig.

Is it a wave? A boat? A building? The Klimatorium’s simple expression makes room for a striking design element that is immediately noticeable – a large three-dimensional wooden arch that rises on the building’s facade. The arch extends into the house, serving as a resting place with benches for the harbor’s guests on the outside of the building.

The arch is intended as a tribute to Lemvig’s distinctive fishing boats, the undulating water of the Limfjord, and the local building traditions. But it’s also a reminder of the sea’s increasing influence on land and the necessity of new adaptations to a changing climate.

View of the Harbor and Sea

Klimatorium was created to find solutions to the world’s climate challenges. The building has offices, meeting rooms, exhibitions, and conference areas, and serves as a meeting place for the local community.

The building, made of steel, glass, concrete, and wood, is built to withstand storms and water. With just two floors, it does not tower over the existing architecture of the harbor. Glass walls on the ground floor give the Klimatorium a light appearance and direct views of the Limfjord just outside.

Stepping inside the Klimatorium, the wooden arch is impossible to miss. In fact, it is incorporated into both floors, almost as if the house was built around it. The simple materials are repeated with raw concrete walls, wooden ceilings, exposed steel beams. On the upper floor’s exterior, vertical wooden slats let in views of the fjord but screen out direct sunlight.

Integrated Coastal Protection

The location at the end of a bay in the Limfjord means that challenges with high water are nothing new for the town of Lemvig. Coastal protection already exists, including a 350-meter-long, low concrete wall with the quirky name Le Mur – a contraction of Lemvig and mur, the Danish name for wall.

In connection with the construction of Klimatorium, even more climate protection has been made. For example, the parking lot is made with so-called permeable paving, which ensures that rain can seep through and away from the land.

The green area next to the Klimatorium consists of trees and plants that thrive in salty coastal environments. The area is also a place where researchers can test and experiment with new climate solutions.