Cottbus is a dynamic city that in the next few years faces wide-ranging structural change from a lignite mining region to an innovation region and that is ready for success. As a regional growth centre, the city is not only a site for education, university and administration, but also the centre for culture and services, economy and innovation as well as mobility and environment.
"We are the modern ‘capital’ of Lusatia. We live, shape and explore structural change, especially in the energy industry. We want to be pioneers of digitalisation, want to become a hydrogen and health region. As a university and traditional park city, we offer pulsating life for wellness."
Holger Kelch, Mayor of Cottbus
Cottbus backs digitalisation in all fields of life – apps and municipal online services make processes increasingly easier, faster, and sustainable. Digitalisation projects are being systematically expedited in 7 focus areas: urban development, administration, healthcare, economy, energy, education, and mobility.
The Business Incubation Centre on the BTU Cottbus-Senftenberg campus with over 5,000 m² (53,893 sq ft) will open in 2021. It will provide entrepreneurial opportunities for business founders and start-ups and offers the incentive to develop ideas to market maturity on site and to successfully manage businesses on a permanent basis.
Cottbus wants to transform itself from a lignite region to a region for innovation and aims at using hydrogen as a future energy source. The conversion of the energy system and the establishment of emission-free local transport are the stakeholders’ declared goals. In the Model Region Hydrogen, innovations are being actively pursued well beyond the borders of the City of Cottbus.
In line with the forecasts regarding skilled labour development in the care sector, the city government, EGC Wirtschaftsförderung Cottbus and the Carl-Thiem-Klinikum have developed their own concept ‘Model Region Care Cottbus and Lower Lusatia’. It explores ideas for the innovative safeguarding of the skilled labour supply in the region across sectors and disciplines.
The flooding of the former lignite opencast mine started in 2019. It will transform over the next few years into the Cottbuser Ostsee lake with a water area of about 7.7 km2 (3 sq mi). This includes the creation of a CO2 neutral harbour district and other projects. Germany’s largest artificial water body promises urban life, work and research by the lake side including sport and leisure activities.
Space for Growth
As one of only a few German cities, Cottbus still provides affordable space for growth in all fields: there still is sufficient potential available both for industrial settlements and commercial enterprises.
With the Technology and Industrial Park Cottbus (TIP), among others, the business location is growing to become Brandenburg’s largest contiguous industrial site in the best location: over 11,000 m2 (118,403 sq ft) are earmarked for investors, entrepreneurs and start-ups. The TIP Cottbus is in the direct vicinity of the BTU Cottbus-Senftenberg and only 3 km (1.9 mi) north-west of the city centre. The Technologie- und Forschungszentrum Cottbus (TFZ – Technology and Research Centre), established in 2011 on the TIP premises, serves as an ‘incubator’ for the implementation of new ideas and the development of new products.