Start-up Incubator/Co-working Space
Gebäudewirtschaft Cottbus (GWC)
The Start-Up Incubator and Co-working Space in Cottbus official opened on October 15th 2021. The building aims to promote innovation and creativity to generate new forms of work in both the city of Cottbus and surrounding Lausitz region in the wake of the political decision to phase out coal nationwide. Located next to the campus of the Brandenburg Institute of Technology (BTU), it concentrates tech start-up activities in a single center while adding another resourceful community building anchored along the axis of principle buildings in the campus.
The dynamic exterior façade is made of perforated carbon fibre textile panels that provide shading and act as semi-transparent screens for private working areas of the building. Behind the shading screens, the wall is clad with perforated aluminum sheets fixed to panels with a black UV resistant membrane. Sustainable prefabricated timber wall panels are integrated between the concrete slab structure and are left exposed on the inside.
The architecture is designed to welcome community use. The ground floor becomes emblematic of this idea with its predominantly glazed façade that creates a transparent connection between happenings inside the building and in the public square. Combined with the textile shading elements projecting out into the sidewalk, the interior space becomes a natural extension to the sidewalk, street and new community square.
The entrance foyer and the ground floor workshops form the communicative center of the building. The foyer is a multifunctional space, serving simultaneously as an access zone, public work area and lounge with a coffee bar. The level difference between the entrance and the area for workshops is designed as a staircase and seating grandstand for informal presentations and events. The foyer’s façade can be opened up to place outdoor seating beneath the extended marquees.
The large co-working office spaces on the 1st floor contain desks that can be rented by start-up founders. Further working spaces with mobile partition walls and independent offices can be found throughout the building. Furniture was sourced from the Spanish interior design company, Dynamobel.
Design Architects: Prof. Bernd Huckriede, Dr. Jens Brinkmann, Ludwig Heimbach, in collaboration with Cottbuser Gesellschaft für Gebäudeerneuerung und Stadtentwicklung