The new high-tech building of the GATE Institute – from dream to reality

The groundbreaking was on 19 May 2021.

30 months of hard work followed.

The GATE building is more than a place that houses a research institute. It is the home of an institution that aims to make people’s lives better with the help of modern science and technology.

It is located in a park environment, surrounded by the historical buildings of the Faculties of Chemistry and Pharmacy, Mathematics and Informatics, and Physics of Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski” in the campus on James Bourchier Blvd.

All these buildings bear the spirit of the time in which they were built. Similarly now, the new building keeps pace with modern trends and is simple and understandable, aesthetically sound and simple.

Before entering the building, the visitor faces a symbolic “portal”, representing a composition of elements symbolizing the institute’s role as a leading research centre in the technologies of the future.

The building is designed in a minimalistic volume – a cubic shape with equal-sized facades designed relative to the exposition – with more material from the east, south and west and more glazing from the north.

It is provided with modern technological solutions that allow mobility and multi-functionality during the operating mode. A double technological floor and suspended raster ceilings are made available. Thus, it is possible to change the spaces depending on the changing needs of the institute.

The building is equipped with sensors to collect data as part of the City Living Lab. This will give an opportunity to experiment on the integration of models with different granularity, such as digital models of individual buildings, and digital models of cities as a complete ecosystem.

The interior planning is flexible and corresponds to the organizational structure of the institute. The spaces are bright, comfortable and welcoming. Vertical green walls, which create a feeling of closeness to nature, are located in the common areas.

The workspaces are varied in type and size, with larger spaces where researchers can share and communicate, as well as smaller ones where everyone can find a place for privacy and concentration.

The interior is simple, minimalist, but comfortable – with a feeling of coziness and tranquility. It predisposes researchers to work in an environment that feels close to home, yet creative and conducive to solitude and concentration

There are four above-ground and one underground level connected by an elevator and an internal staircase. On the roof of the building there is an open terrace for relaxation and reflection

There is a multipurpose hall with a capacity of 120 people, where events and conferences will be held, as well as two more large halls – one for visualizations – with large screens and virtual reality equipment. The other large hall is for presentation purposes – for innovations and novelties in the field of information technologies

The building has two more rooms for training and conference meetings, as well as an open space for work.

Drone video of the GATE building.

GATE acknowledges the financial support of the Operational programme “Science and Education for Smart Growth” 2014-2020, cofunded by the EU through the European Regional Development Fund.