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Björn Budack, Managing Director of Kiez Büro GmbH; Dirk Steinbach, Director Project Development of Deutsche Wohnen SE; Dagmar Pohle, Mayor of the Borough of Marzahn-Hellersdorf (l. to r.) / © Anja Menzel, Deutsche Wohnen

The premises of the former branch office of a bank are being used for the co-working spaces. On this floor space of more than 300 m2, there are 27 fully equipped work stations, of which only 14 can currently be used because of corona restrictions. In addition to these work stations, there are also meeting rooms, phone boxes, corners with soft seating and a fully fitted kitchen with room for 12 people.

Whilst classic co-working provision is directed mainly at the self-employed and at people collaborating on a project basis, the pilot project Deutsche Wohnen Desk is designed quite pragmatically for employees who do not have ideal conditions for working from home. Indeed, the project offers them an alternative close to home which enables them to work locally in the neighbourhood. In future, Deutsche Wohnen hopes to offer further co-working spaces to residents in its established and newly built estates.

Henrik Thomsen, Chief Development Officer (CDO) of Deutsche Wohnen: “We can all see that the world of work is changing. More and more people are using the opportunity to work at home. However, all too often working from home involves sitting at the kitchen table under poor light conditions and with an unstable internet connection. With Deutsche Wohnen Desk, we are offering a healthy, close-to-home alternative that combines the advantages of working from home with those of the office. If you like, this is working from home – but on a professional basis. In this way we are bringing work closer to home.”

Dagmar Pohle, Mayor of the Borough of Marzahn-Hellersdorf: “There are more and more people in Marzahn-Hellersdorf who don’t just want to live outside of the city centre but who want and are able to work locally as well – and not just because of the restrictions caused by the pandemic. An offer that acknowledges these changes in a positive way is also a sign of modernisation and decentralisation in a city which, for a very long time, has defined itself mainly in terms of its centre. Here in this borough, one can not only live well, one can work well here too.”

Björn Budack, Managing Director of Kiez Büro GmbH: “Working from home is a major challenge, particularly in residential areas like Hellersdorf. The service Deutsche Wohnen Desk offers a close-to-home alternative which has for many years now established itself in city-centre locations as a “third place of work” alongside the office and working from home. In putting this idea into practice, Deutsche Wohnen is playing a pioneering role amongst other residential property companies.”

Users can choose from a variety of tickets. A work station can be rented for one day or ten days. Furthermore, users can choose between a flexible and a fixed work station. And companies can book work stations too. A day ticket costs Deutsche Wohnen tenants eight euros whereas the price for other users is EUR 18.00. Work stations can be booked via the following link: www.deutsche-wohnen.com/schreibtisch/.

As Henrik Thomsen explains, “Deutsche Wohnen Desk is primarily a service offered to our tenants in the local neighbourhood. We aim to do more than just let flats. We aim to create attractive, vibrant neighbourhoods where people are happy to both live and work. For this reason, our tenants can book their Deutsche Wohnen Desk work station on particularly favourable terms.”

The pilot project is initially set to run for a period of 12 months. If demand is satisfactory, Deutsche Wohnen Desk will remain a permanent service in the neighbourhood. Furthermore, it is possible that Deutsche Wohnen will develop further co-working spaces in other boroughs in Berlin.

According to a Civey survey commissioned by Deutsche Wohnen, half of all Berliners regularly work from home, with a quarter actually doing so every day. The survey also showed that a quarter of Berliners cannot concentrate properly when working from home, for example because they don’t have a study or adequate office equipment or because there are children in the household. The survey also asked what was particularly important to Berliners working from home. In response, two thirds of respondents said it was a stable internet connection and just under half mentioned ergonomic office furniture and high-quality monitors.

Deutsche Wohnen is one of the largest landlords in Marzahn-Hellersdorf. More than 35,000 people live here in its approximately 15,000 flats. During the past few years, the company has underlined its commitment to the area with extensive investments in both buildings and the social infrastructure. Between 2014 and 2018, the Hellersdorfer Promenade with over 1,200 flats underwent a complete refurbishment and energy-efficient modernisation. For the construction work alone Deutsche Wohnen invested approximately EUR 20 million. Since 2015, the company has supported the association Kids & Co, the annual district festival Hellersdorf North and further social and cultural projects in the neighbourhood.

 

Deutsche Wohnen

Deutsche Wohnen is one of the leading publicly listed residential property companies in Europe. The business focus of the company is on managing its own portfolio of residential properties in dynamic metropolitan regions and conurbations in Germany. Deutsche Wohnen sees itself as having both a social responsibility and a duty to maintain and newly develop good-quality and affordable housing in vibrant residential neighbourhoods. As at 31 December 2020, the portfolio comprised a total of around 155,400 residential and 2,900 commercial units. Deutsche Wohnen SE is listed in the Deutsche Börse’s DAX and is also included in the leading indices EPRA/NAREIT, STOXX Europe 600, GPR 250 and DAX 50 ESG.  

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