Further development on the Diagonal-Besòs Campus with the cornerstone laying for the new building for SMEs, start-ups and co-working spaces and the opening of the park

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The rector of the UPC, Francesc Torres, upon symbolically burying the cornerstone of building E, which is intended for SMEs, start-ups and co-working spaces, at the event with other institutional authorities.

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From left to right: the rector of the UPC, Francesc Torres; the mayor of Barcelona, Ada Colau; the president of the Diagonal-Besòs Campus Consortium and the second deputy mayor of Barcelona, Janet Sanz; the mayor of Sant Adrià de Besòs, Joan Callau; and the minister for Business and Knowledge, Ramon Tremosa.

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Render of the new building for SMEs, start-ups and co-working spaces. Image courtesy of Triple Helix.

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The new Campus Diagonal-Besòs Park is connected to the Parc de la Pau and the Fòrum Port. Photo by Sandra Ramos

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Aerial image of the Diagonal-Besòs Campus. Aerial Archive photo

The cornerstone laying for building E - which is intended for SMEs, start-ups and co-working spaces - on the UPC’s Diagonal-Besòs Campus and the inauguration of the new park and gardens, with a surface area of more than 20,000 square meters, will enhance the Campus.

Mar 17, 2021

On 17 March an event was held to lay the cornerstone of building E on the Diagonal-Besòs Campus of the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya · BarcelonaTech (UPC), which is intended for SMEs, start-ups and co-working spaces, and to inaugurate the new campus park. The event was attended by the minister for Business and Knowledge, Ramon Tremosa; the mayor of Barcelona, Ada Colau; the mayor of Sant Adrià de Besòs, Joan Callau; the president of the Diagonal-Besòs Campus Consortium and the second deputy mayor of Barcelona, Janet Sanz; and the rector of the UPC, Francesc Torres.

The new building will be erected on a plot of land intended for business use that has a construction eligibility of over 7,000 m2. The building, which will have a capacity of 700 people, will house SMEs and start-ups from existing groups, groups active on the Campus or groups primarily working in the same research areas.

With a budget of 16 million euros, construction has begun in March. The building is expected to be operational by March 2023 and will host entrepreneurial and multidisciplinary initiatives that are mainly aimed at sectors related to research activities on the Campus.

Opening of the Diagonal-Besòs Campus Park
The Diagonal-Besòs Campus Park is a new large space for parks and gardens of more than 20,000 m2 that connects the Rambla de La Mina with the area of the Fòrum Port and that brings the sea closer to the university community and surrounding residents. The area has been developed to organise unbuilt spaces on the Campus Park and its connected areas.

After completion of the main road to the Campus and its temporary connection to the Plaça del Fòrum in 2019, the park and its urban connections were still to be developed. Therefore, in parallel with the development of the Park, the Ronda Litoral underpass towards Carrer de la Pau and Avinguda de Francesc Botey has been improved.

The project had a budget of about 3.6 million euros and was developed on the Campus plot P1 for the purpose of connecting the neighbourhoods of El Besòs i El Maresme in Barcelona and La Mina in Sant Adrià, the Fòrum Port and the Campus. It is already the main park in the area and it has a playground and also a football and a basketball court for the Campus community and surrounding residents.

Other future projects on the Campus
The new building for business activity is one of the future projects that are expected to be developed on the Campus in the coming years. In July 2020, the Government of Catalonia and the UPC signed an agreement to promote building D, which will be the 6th building on the Diagonal-Besòs Campus. This new building will become a pole of attraction for research centres and groups and it will complement the other operational facilities on the Campus. The building will have a total floor area of more than 10,600 m2 with an investment of approximately 20 million euros. It is expected to be highly sustainable, just like the other buildings on the Diagonal-Besòs Campus.

Last but not least, development for plots L and M - where the 7th building of the Diagonal-Besòs Campus will be erected - must be planned this year. It is planned to be a facility of more than 20,000 m2 at the entrance of the Campus. It will house the Barcelona Energia project, it will also receive entrepreneurial activities from Barcelona Activa and promote new ones and it will host UPC lifelong learning programmes. Additionally, it will house new companies linked to the Campus or related to its areas of knowledge.

The Diagonal-Besòs Campus

In September 2016, the Diagonal-Besòs Campus of the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC) was inaugurated, with 3,100 students and 400 teaching and research staff from the Barcelona East School of Engineering (EEBE). The school offers seven bachelor’s degrees, four master’s degrees and four doctoral degrees, focusing on Biomedical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Industrial Electronics and Automatic Control Engineering, Energy Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Chemical Engineering and Materials Engineering. In addition to its teaching activity, the EEBE is linked to 41 groups and research centres in several fields of engineering.

The Diagonal-Besòs Campus is a constantly growing project that relies on the collaboration and promotion of several institutions: the Government of Catalonia, the city councils of Barcelona and Sant Adrià de Besòs, the UPC, the Metropolitan Area of Barcelona and the Besòs and Zona Franca consortiums.

This area for innovation and knowledge located between Barcelona and Sant Adrià de Besòs is one of the top Catalan university campuses in sustainable engineering, with a construction eligibility of over 150,000 m2 to host teaching, research, innovation, business activity and services to the university community. Additionally, the Campus was conceived to achieve a significant impact on the region and to act as a key element in its social and economic transformation.

The Campus has four fully operational buildings: one for teaching, two for research and a residence hall for students, professors and researchers. The first one houses the EEBE (building A), with a total floor area of 20,000 m2, which gathers all teaching activities and management services. The research buildings C and I, with a total area of 5,750 m2 and 6,330 m2 respectively, host research groups and centres (essentially related to energy, biomedical engineering, chemical engineering and materials engineering) and the Barcelona Research Center in Multiscale Science and Engineering. The Diagonal-Besòs residence hall (building H) for students, professors and researchers was inaugurated in late 2019.

Once the project is fully deployed, the Campus will have 13 buildings and an expected community of 15,000 people.