Genomic DNA in bacteria exists in a condensed state, which exhibits different biochemical and biophysical properties from a dilute solution. DNA was concentrated on streptavidin-covered single-walled carbon nanotubes (Strep⋅SWNTs) through biotin–streptavidin interactions. We reasoned that confining DNA within a defined space through mechanical constraints, rather than by manipulating buffer conditions, would more closely resemble physiological conditions. By ensuring a high streptavidin loading on SWNTs of about 1 streptavidin tetramer per 4 nm of SWNT, we were able to achieve dense DNA binding. DNA is bound to Strep⋅SWNTs at a tunable density and up to as high as 0.5 mg mL−1 in solution and 29 mg mL−1 on a 2D surface. This platform allows us to observe the aggregation behavior of DNA at high concentrations and the counteracting effects of HU protein (a histone-like protein from Escherichia coli strain U93) on the DNA aggregates. This provides an in vitro model for studying DNA–DNA and DNA–protein interactions at a high DNA concentration.