An update on co.up’s temporary closure

tl;dr co.up remains closed to meetups until further notice, and is open for producing remote events and hosting co-learning groups of max. 8 guests + 2 organizers. all events taking place at the space must first be confirmed via email.

It has now been a little over three months since we decided to temporarily close co.up to help curb the spread of covid-19 in Berlin. In April, we announced that we would set a date for reopening once federal and local authorities and health experts gave the green light to hold events.

As of June 2, it is legal for groups of up to 150 people to meet indoors in Berlin (11. SARS-CoV2-Maßn-V §4 (5)*). It must be noted that the pandemic is still ongoing, and that indoor gatherings have been shown to pose a significantly higher risk of contagion due to a number of factors. Several safety measures must therefore be implemented.

At the time of writing, holding an event at co.up requires, among other things, the following:

  • developing and implementing a concept guaranteeing that people present in the space maintain a distance of 1.5m between each other at all times, that entrance and exit is managed, that no one is congregating or waiting in line close to each other (11. SARS- CoV-2-MaßN-V § 2 (1) 4. & 5)
  • documenting the contact information of all guests and hosts present at the event for one month, including their complete home address and phone number and the times and duration of their visit, for the necessary purposes of contact tracing (11. SARS- CoV-2-MaßN-V § 2 (1) 8. & § 2 (2))

We have put a lot of thought into how these rules apply to our space, and our conclusion is that implementing these regulations at co.up for anything larger than a small co-learning group is not feasible.

There are two main reasons for this. Firstly, folks familiar with our space will know that it is small; even in non-pandemic times, it can only hold 30-40 people sitting down and 70-100 people standing up. Ensuring that people gather in this space while keeping at least 1.5m apart during a meetup-style event is not realistically enforceable. Secondly, we want co.up to be a place where folks are safe to come and go, and we are not comfortable with the implications of meetup guests’ private information being collected and stored, for any length of time.

Where meetups are concerned, co.up will therefore remain closed until further notice. This is independent of whether, for example, current 1.5m distancing rules are lifted. Regulations have always been just one of our conditions for keeping the space open or closed to the public during this situation, and we remain committed to the safety of our communities first and foremost.

With this said, we want to honor our communities and their continued support by making sure that the space does not go unused at a time when it is needed. We have therefore decided that co.up can be opened for producing remote events. This means that the space can be used for the purposes of recording and/or broadcasting an online event on weekday evenings and on weekends, by a maximum of four people, who are either co-hosts or speakers—strictly no guests. Any use of the space for this purpose must be approved by us via email beforehand at hello [at] co-up [dot] de and will be subject to certain conditions.

Concerning co-learning groups, groups who have previously met at co.up weekly, biweekly or monthly may use the space for co-learnings with a maximum of eight guests and two organizers. This must also be confirmed with with us via email beforehand, and is also subject to a number of other conditions. Organizers who are interested can get in touch with us via Slack or email. They are free to also broadcast these meetings from the space if they so choose. The Cobot offices, also known as the 5th floor, remain closed to all events.

In this unprecedented situation, we continue to be extremely grateful for folks’ patience and support despite these uncertain times. We also want to ask for your continued patience and support while we ensure that every decision we make follows our commitment to the safety of attendees and of our larger community. We look forward to being able to see you in person again at the end of this strange time.

  • SARS-Cov2-Maßn-V text last retrieved on 23/6/2020.

For more background on co.up’s history, the financial situation, future plans, and on who’s running co.up, read our FAQ.

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