Generating knowledge in the city – Universities 

Universities are places of research and teaching, which attract like a magnet both people – students and staff – and follow-on institutions, all of these generate new knowledge. Research institutions and students thus influence and shape cities and the way of life in them.


Brest is home to one of the sites of the Université de Bretagne Occidentale (University of West Brittany) (UBO). After the war, there were too many applicants for the too few universities in France, which is why a decision was taken to found new universities. The idea of founding a university in Brest arose in 1954 to provide the town with a second pillar alongside the military. By way of organisation, it was to be affiliated to the university in Rennes. From then on, preparatory courses for students were offered in Brest. In 1959, the Collège scientifique universitaire (University Scientific College) opened in the provisional building on Rue Duquesne.

In 1961, the University of Brest gained its independence from Rennes, whereupon other faculties were created. On the Bouguen plateau, in the area of the fortifications, the first of several permanent university buildings was erected in 1962 to replace the shanty town there. As the number of faculties increased, other new faculty buildings were constructed in the 1990s, such as the building of the ‘Faculté des Lettres et des Sciences Humaines’ (The Faculty of Letters and Humanities) “Victor Segalen” on the former site of the provisional ‘Collège scientifique universitaire’.

15.1 Institut des Lettres et Sciences Humaines, temporary buildings, rue Duquesne, general view around 1960 

15.2 University scientific college on the Bouguen plateau, around 1965 

15.3 UBO, Faculty of Science and Technology, the former University Scientific College, entrance on avenue Victor Le Gorgeu, 2021 

15.4 UBO, Faculty of Letters and Humanities “Victor Segalen”, rue Duquesne, 2009 


The University of Dresden was founded in 1828 as a “technical educational institution”. Initially, teaching took place in a pavilion on the terraces of the city fortifications along the Elbe. In 1846 the school got its own new building on Antonplatz and in 1875 a representative main building next to today’s main railway station.

From 1900 until the 1930s, a new campus was added to the university in the area of Südvorstadt. At the same time, the Tharandt Forestry Academy, founded in the 18th century, was affiliated to the Technical University.

15.5 University of Dresden, building 

15.6 University of Dresden, model of the new campus, 1904 main building on Bismarckplatz, ca. 1875

In 1945, a large part of the buildings was badly damaged, but immediately after the end of the war, the first reconstruction plans emerged, which envisaged continuing the earlier campus planning and extending it towards the east. The planning of the individual buildings was entrusted to the architecture professors Walter Henn and Karl Wilhelm Ochs, who constructed buildings in a businesslike, traditionalist style.

With the founding of the Hochschule für Verkehrswesen (College of Transport) in 1952, Walter Henn also took over its overall planning. His aim was to connect the University to the city centre via the College of Transport. From 1954, Richard Paulick revised this design in such a way that a complete university town was to be built south of the main railway station close to the city centre. Paulick’s buildings were constructed in the prescribed style of the “National Tradition”.

In 1992, the University of Transport was dissolved and its buildings taken over by the newly founded University of Technology and Economics.

15.7 Dresden University campus project 1951/1954, assembled plan 

15.8 Dresden University, Institutes of Mathematics and Physic, drawing 1952 

15.9 Dresden University, Kutzbach-Bau, 1961 

15.10 College of Transport, main building, Zeichnung 1954 

15.11 University of Dresden, Beyer-Bau, reconstruction