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Some History

This is being pulled from the main page, archiving it here, if you are interested...

For some History:
Hackuarium found its new home (yay!) after being generously hosted for four years in infrastructures provided by UniverCité, an unconventional innovation hub that opened in May 2014 in the "Ateliers" in Renens (formerly IRL building). Our equipment is mostly upcycled material from institutions and industries from western Switzerland. We have documented our working environment as it has evolved. For almost 6 months, our big hoods and other equipment were in storage, ready to be moved into our new lab space, a happy event begun the 1st of February 2019!

Between December 2015 and January 2017, UniverCité regrouped our laboratory, a workshop and coworking space. The floor where we originally moved in 2014 required some refurbishing and was under construction work from January until June 2017; and we temporarily relocated on the first floor of the same building. In July 2017, we went back on the second floor of what is now called the "Ateliers de Renens" Chemin du Closel 5, 1020 Renens. The original plan in the renovated space was to have a biohackerspace on one side, with a 'pro' lab space on the other, and a shared biosafety level 1 laboratory in between. Social area was included in this design, but was quickly given over to a startup. The community lab idea for UC, had been given over to primarily startup and co-working hosting, with a loss not only of Hackuarium, but of the active MakerSpace, through various complicated maneuvers.


When Hackuarium was asked to pay rent as if it were already a startup with a successful business plan, the members decided during an extraordinary general assembly meeting (on 12 September 2018), that we would have to look for a new place to set-up our biohacker space and P1 lab, with enough room to allow further growth and exciting collaborations. A cooperative (Space Alliance Coopérative) with two other associations (Octanis & Polymeka) and a few other startups came together to look for a new place to call home and provide space for everyone's projects and work. Our first activities in the new spaces started in February 2019. Our biolab and inner sanctum for electronics and imagerie and more are already facilitating project experiments, with more fun in the pipeline with our coop colleagues, like Sam and Raffael from Octanis, who were also early members of Hackuarium.
Octanis was born as a Hackuarium project after all, and now has not only its very own association, but two branches of its co (the other in Zurich) - Octanis Instruments. :) Big Bravos to Sam and Raffael!
The great challenge will be to become sustainable - the building is already slated to be destroyed in the next 3-5 years. Hackuarium and the coop must keep making friends and watching out for opportunities for a new, more secure space! If you have ideas in that regard, please contact hello (at) hackuarium...