HLRS III University of Stuttgart

HRLS3 Stuttgart Web

housing a new generation of supercomputers

For one of the leading technically oriented universities in Germany, the University of Stuttgart, Benthem Crouwel Architects and Birk Heilmeyer und Frenzel Architekten are designing a state-of-the-art building that offers efficient and functional accommodation for a new generation of supercomputers.

Simulation, visualization and Artificial Intelligence have become essential tools for understanding and addressing many of society’s most complex problems nowadays. The High-Performance Computing Center Stuttgart (HLRS) supports large-scale computational research in the Stuttgart region, but also for researchers across Germany and Europe. As home to one of Europe’s fastest supercomputers and a large team of HPC experts HLRS provides essentials tools and solutions for cutting-edge academic and industrial research.

The new building, HLRS III, will be built east of the existing buildings HLRS1-II. It will be a new addition to the high-quality architecture of the Vaihingen Campus, and will set a new standard in the field of responsible construction: sustainable, energy-efficient, circular and nature-inclusive.

Everything in the new building serves the server room, the HPC room. The optimal functioning of the servers is the essence of HLRS III. The server room therefore literally forms the heart of the building; a completely obstacle-free space that is surrounded by technical rooms.

A deep vertical cut separates the warm and welcoming office part from the technical part of the building. This so-called ‘canyon’ serves as a circulation and communication space for employees. Walking up and down the hanging stairs it offers a unique spatial experience allowing guided views into the HPC room through different sized openings in a massive concrete wall. Additionally, the canyon with its unobstructed vertical space plays an important role in cooling down the building at night.


HLRS III will be a responsible building. A lot of energy is needed for the servers to function. The residual heat that accumulates is fed into the university's underground heat distribution network. This makes it possible to cover more than half of the heat demand of the university buildings at peak times. This reduces the energy demand for these buildings. Furthermore, the roof and parts of the facade will be provided with vegetation and solar panels.

Additionally HLRS-III will be the first data center with server rooms to be constructed largely from wood. The load bearing structure in the HPC room consists out of a massive timber structure while the office part will be constructed as a wood concrete hybrid structure. Wood is a renewable material and stores CO2. Moreover, visible timber ceilings and columns create warm and welcoming spaces that contrast the state of the art technology used.

The project is commissioned by Vermögen und Bau Baden-Württemberg and realization is expected to take place in 2027.

Benthem Crouwel Architects, Birk Heilmeyer und Frenzel Architekten
Landesbetrieb Vermögen und Bau Baden-Württemberg, Universitätsbauamt Stuttgart und Hohenheim
University of Stuttgart / Bundeshöchstleistungsrechenzentrum Stuttgart
University Campus Vaihingen, Stuttgart, Germany
Gross floor area
12.500 m2