Deep in the South of Holland, Carbon6 is making big changes in Heerlen, The Netherlands. A lovely city with heart, Heerlen has faced its own challenges with decades of economic decline in traditional industries of coal mining and chemicals. When one of the city’s largest employers – the National Statistics Office – decided to move to a new centre, Walas immediately saw a great opportunity and developed an ambitious vision for the revitalization of the vacant buildings and sites. Walas now owns and operates the sprawling 500,000 sq.ft complex, fully re-purposed for arts and culture, start-up companies and social enterprises. A total of 1200 people are currently employed in the building. It is on its way to being carbon neutral. The financial situation completely turned around.
The complex is now home to the largest creative cluster in the Netherlands, including the region’s largest pop music school and artists in painting, glassworks and digital media. The community has developed many successful initiatives, including the very popular Treats gifts, which helps community members expand their business through beautifully curated gift packages.
The Dutch National Mining Museum, also located at Carbon6, honours the proud history of the region. This museum is located in an 1897 mineshaft building, classified as one of UNESCO’s top-100 monuments.
Innovations for circular economy, green energy and urban farming are prototyped and implemented in the buildings to improve the sustainability of the complex and to incubate new businesses.
For more information, or to schedule a visit, please contact us.