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The rise of Construction City

Construction City will promote sustainability, collaboration and innovation across the construction industry

Barely a year has gone since OBOS, AF Gruppen and Betonmast founded the innovation cluster Construction City. Now, companies and organizations from across the industry spectrum are scrambling to join the journey. Through clustering, the members will make the industry more sustainable, greener and at the same time ensure smart use of technology and new working methods.

Great interest
Part innovation cluster and part co-location, the first campus at Ulven in Oslo is where traditional competitors, legacy entrepreneurs, and groundbreaking startups will meet across sectors to share insights, collaborate, and build the industry’s international muscle. The cluster will be sustainable both in the form of creating jobs, how the future office is set up and buildings built to meet the future demands for climate solutions.

Collaboration within the cluster is already taking place, says Construction City CEO Benedicte Økland:

«Our members come from the entire industry value chain. They are the ones who building the future of construction in Norway», Økland says. “This blend of entrepreneurs, consultants, and developers, along with a growing number of startups and all the crucial academic institutions, allows us to challenge and lift each other. With close to 60 members already, and talking to many potential members, we are well-positioned to build a strong ecosystem that can drive the industry’s collective competitive power».

Campus rising
Construction cranes hover over the Ulven area in Oslo as a new, sustainable innovation district rises just ten minutes from the city center.

Here, Construction City will find its first physical home in more than 80 000 square meters premium office space. OBOS, AF Gruppen and Betonmast will be the first to co-locate here when completed in 2025.

Six spacious office wings will shoot out from a lofty and pleasant social atrium where people meet for events and meals to share insights, initiate collaboration and drive new solutions. The inviting physical space will be accompanied by a vibrant digital community where cluster members discuss industry strategy.

CoLab – Construction City in a nutshell
Nowhere is the cluster’s vision more visible than in CoLab. 300 square meters of flexible work stations and state-of-the-art meeting facilities, CoLab is a 24/7 coworking space where members meet, host events and inspire each other.

The space was officially opened by Prime Minister Erna Solberg in September 2019. Wearing the goggles that allow her to move around in a 3D-rendered building model, the PM emphasized the industry’s importance as a supplier of critical infrastructure that affects everyone’s bottom line:

«Moving away from the ‘You Win, I Lose’-attitude is paramount. If your company does better, so does mine. If your company delivers products with fewer errors before my business takes over, the lower costs for both of us», Solberg said. «That is the beauty of broader collaboration. Competition is not the only way to become better.»