View into the entrance area of the WTC Dresden.

Community and interaction with an ecological concept

While ecological issues continue to dominate the discussion on ESG in the building sector, social aspects are also gradually coming into play. The main focus is on interaction within the properties and the influence that buildings and their users can have on the surrounding neighbourhood. World Trade Center Dresden (WTC Dresden) addresses both ecological and social aspects, making it an example that is worth a closer look.

As part of the World Trade Center Association, the centre management team at the WTC in Dresden regularly attends the European Regional Meetings. This in-person dialogue between the responsible property managers is intended to help improve the operation of the buildings, foster better connections among the users and further increase engagement with the local neighbourhood. There are more than 300 WTC buildings worldwide, with 82 in Europe. The organisation sees itself as an international ecosystem for global contacts, prestigious buildings and economic activities.

Deka Immobilien is the main owner of the complex, holding six of the eight buildings. Together with the local centre management, it has developed the WTC into a leading business and knowledge location in the city in recent years.

Among other events, the WTC has hosted the Dresden Real Estate Symposium since 2015, where national real estate experts discuss the latest market developments with local and regional players. A wide range of topics have been covered over the years, including housing, urban living, energy of the future and the real estate boom and bubble, as well as sustainability as a driver of innovation.

View into the WTC Dresden

Mixed use and social amenities

Opened in 1996, the WTC offers around 90,000 sqm of office and commercial space in total. In 2011, a generous glass atrium was added to the passageway between the two buildings. The 17-storey high-rise marks out the WTC in Dresden’s cityscape.

The market stalls in the WTC’s atrium are very popular with the building’s users.

The market stalls in the WTC’s atrium are very popular with the building’s users.

A broad and flexible range of spaces has led to a strong mix of tenants. Alongside traditional service providers and medium-sized companies, various offices of the technical administration of the city of Dresden are also located in the WTC. Dresden International University (DIU) has its administrative, conference and event rooms here. Hospitality and retail spaces are distributed around the atrium on the ground floor. Two water features and seating create additional places for users to linger, and a model of Dresden city centre is accessible to the public in an exhibition area. In addition to many industry-specific events, the WTC regularly hosts a wide variety of gatherings and experiences for users and the general public. These include sustainability weeks, self-help days, job fairs, exhibitions and a start-up week.

The atrium area itself is regularly used for different events and experiences. The WTC’s regular summer festival and the weekly market with fresh regional produce are particularly popular with users and the neighbourhood as a whole. The four-star Hotel Elbflorenz welcomes guests from around the world, and the Comödie theatre located in the complex, which has around 640 seats, is an integral part of Dresden’s cultural landscape.

Ultimately, the WTC is more than a building. It is an urban building block that makes an active contribution to coexistence through its mix of commercial, public, scientific and cultural uses.



Buildings and cities are brought to life by people. That is why social and societal aspects – alongside environmental quality – are an essential component of sustainable buildings. For us, this includes a variety of offerings that allow users to come together and interact with the neighbourhood, as we see at the WTC.

Torsten Simon Head of Real Estate Management Germany North


Environmental qualities

In terms of environmental qualities, the WTC has a climate action road map developed specifically for the building, which simulates its performance with a view to national climate goals. The climate action road map defines medium- and long-term optimisation measures for the building with the aim of achieving climate-neutral operation in the long term. With this in mind, the structure offers favourable characteristics such as a building envelope with a modern thermal quality and a central atrium that acts as a thermal buffer zone to reduce heat losses through the exterior components.

The WTC is already one of many buildings owned by Deka Immobilien that uses a smart data solution to control its systems by looking ahead at weather forecasts, thereby creating a high-quality indoor climate and reducing energy costs and CO2 emissions. Going forward, the location is expected to generate its own energy. The installation of a large-scale photovoltaic system, which is planned for the medium term, will play a key role in offsetting unavoidable emissions using electrical energy produced on site. Above all, the use of the adjacent district heating provided by the local public utility company Stadtwerke Dresden will minimise CO2 emissions and enable climate-neutral operation of the building in the long term.

An end-to-end system leads to DGNB Platinum

The WTC’s environmental qualities and active operation in consultation with the users and the neighbourhood earned the property Platinum certification from the German Sustainable Building Council (DGNB) in December 2022.

Graphic showing the environment, social aspects and the economy

Environment, social aspects and economy: the DGNB Platinum award underlines the outstanding and well-balanced result of the certification.

Implementing the UN Sustainable Development Goals

Icon of UN Sustainable Development Goal number 11. To the right of the number is written "Sustainable Cities and Communities". Below it, various buildings in white outlines against an orange background.

11 Sustainable cities and communities

The broad mix of uses, central location and active public use of the property contribute to this SDG.

Icon for UN Sustainable Development Goal number 13. To the right of the number is written "Climate action". Below is an eye with the globe as a pupil in white against a green background.

13 Climate action

Reduction of greenhouse gas emissions through the use of MeteoViva and the future installation of a photovoltaic system.

Icon for UN Sustainable Development Goal number 4. To the right of the number is written "Quality Education". Below in white an open book and a pen against a red background.

4 Quality education

The conscious leasing of space to an international university addresses this SDG.