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Iconic views inside and out at this London office from Peldon Rose

Peldon Rose were tasked with creating an inspirational environment that would see the London office become iconic for the company, and support their identity as a truly international company.

28/10/2020 6 min read

Project Team

  • Client


  • Architect & Interior Designer

    Peldon Rose

  • Furniture

    Herman Miller, PRL Furniture, Arper, Vitra, Workstories, Icons of Denmark, OCEE design, Hay, Naughtone, Linge Roset, Andrew Martin, Tom Dixon, Allermuir, Dead Good, Orangebox, Forest of Home, Framery, Jennifer Newman, Interior Exterior

  • Flooring

    Interface, Moduleo, Karndean, Mazegrass, Forbo, Gerf lor, Grestec, Strata Tiles

  • Surfaces

    H&E Smith, Strata Tiles, Domus, Feathr, Andrew Martin, Sign of the Times

  • Storage

    JBL Joinery, Herman Miller

  • Other suppliers

    Atriuvm, Kvadrat, Resonics, Arktura

Global software company, theTradeDesk, has taken more than 76,000 sq ft over four floors at One Bartholomew. The new Grade A building is in the regenerated area of St Bart’s, sitting in the heart of London and bridging the juxtaposition of the financial history and heritage of the City with the tech and creative industries emerging from Farringdon and Clerkenwell.

The bold, impressive design – courtesy of Peldon Rose – represents the company’s pioneering approach and plays an important role in their attraction of new staff.

As a global business, there are certain values that theTradeDesk holds as integral to the success of the business and the development of its vibrant, people-centric culture. While the headcount sits at approximately 300 staff, a key concept of the design was to make it a space for the individual – a welcoming environment that balances the sensation of homeliness with an engaging, inspirational community atmosphere.

The relocation was led by a requirement to create a more connected office. The company’s culture is very much focused on the idea of community and bringing people together. To achieve ambitions of growth while nurturing this passionate culture, the business needed to move to a location that would lift any limitations on staff and the ways they worked.

We ask Senior Project Designer, Sonia Crozier, to tell us about the origins of the project. Sonia reveals that the former London home was a relatively small 8,000 sq ft space on Farringdon Road. theTradeDesk had already selected One Bartholomew and Peldon Rose assisted with early stage feasibility studies on the potential costs, and the occupational opportunities that this particular property presented. ‘We also acted as the client’s monitor whilst the Cat A works were being undertaken by the developer’s contractor, ensuring the client were kept informed of any unexpected changes in specification or any potential delays, Sonia tells us.

‘We hadn’t worked with the client previously, however, from the very first meeting, it was apparent that we shared the same philosophies on what makes a successful project. Our passion, enthusiasm, creativity, and desire to build an amazing new home for theTradeDesk just shone through and stood us apart from the competition.   

‘Before any designs were even considered, we initially started with establishing the key facts about theTradeDesk. A forensic and immersive process, consisting of utilisation studies, staff questionnaires and all-employee workshops provided us with the raw data to really establish what was needed from the new office. This ensured a strategic and fact-based design approach was applied to the scheme.

‘From that moment onwards, we started the iterative process of early concept ideas through to final design development. Every step of the design journey, from initial high-level moods and ideas through to detailed finishes and M&E and IT services was done in collaboration with our client’s in-house real estate and property team in California and their London stakeholders.’

So what were the hopes and aspirations of the client?

‘To build a new London base that would act as a major attractor for new talent and new clientele – a London office that was a home for their people and not your everyday ‘cut and paste’ office,’ Sonia considers. ‘The design had to demonstrate the scale of their global business and yet still provide a uniquely London and intimate, people-centric home; a space for their people to thrive in and build upon the great community culture that theTradeDesk has built across the world.

‘On a practical note, the space had to be able to facilitate large potential growth. As a solution, they sub-let two of the four floors they had taken at One Bartholomew to future proof their growth. This allowed us to design an environment that could easily adapt for increase in headcount without physically changing the design footprint.’

A key finding from the workplace consultancy was that there is no concept of presenteeism in the business. The people here are valued on their performance, energy, culture and passion for the business. Having this in-depth appreciation of its people and their day-to-day behaviours was an essential part of the space, as the office has been designed to maximise the space and allow people to connect in a hugely diverse landscape. To facilitate this, Peldon Rose has built this space around an activity based working philosophy, with a desk for each member of staff. This was because they wanted everyone to feel that they had their own individual space, even though they are not required to use it.

As you would expect from a global media agency, we have equipped the space with dedicated areas for games tables, a catered kitchen with free snacks and a bar. But at the core of the business is a philosophy of being humble and nurturing their community.  Creating an office that inspires their people does not end with tangible perks and benefits; it is about building a landscape that connects people and empowering them with trust and freedom. This approach helps to support a healthy way of working as well as mental wellbeing.

‘As a designer, it is important to understand (from a client) their requirements, their culture and how they operate,’ Sonia continues.  ‘Being a global organisation, we had to understand how they interact from different locations around the world.  It was critical to really get under the client’s skin.’

To achieve this, Sonia visited California, where she met with the client team at the head office in Ventura. Being with the client team and immersing herself into their environment, she was able to experience, first-hand, the real culture and vibe of the business and how the company operates, meeting their people to truly understand their needs and how they really used their workspace. ‘It became very apparent that they spent more time in meeting rooms and in collaborative workshops than at their desks,’ Sonia recalls.

‘Long before the pandemic and the enforced working from home that we have seen of late, theTradeDesk were already big online communicators and they would be engaging with different members and teams around the world via the Zoom platform on a daily basis. They would use software like Slack to help aid internal communication. Having team members in different countries, it was important to design a work environment that had different size meeting rooms, with good acoustics, near to their desks.

‘theTradeDesk has grown rapidly in a short space of time; a new organisation, uncertain of how their office space should reflect them, not really having an established interior identity.  Their current offices were very much trial and error.  Every time a new office was complete, they would work out what worked and what didn’t.

‘One Bartholomew was the largest design and fit out project they had encountered. This was to be the flagship to help identify who they are, their culture and help aid a playbook of design principles to roll out in their future offices around the world.’

The whole project was delivered on a Design & Build basis. The scope of works was far more detailed and complex than any average Cat B project. They involved major structural modifications to create a connected central atrium with stadium style seating. The slab had to be cut across three levels and significant penetrations were made to facilitate this ambitious design.

‘The design conception developed whilst visiting their office in California,’ Sonia explains. ‘We quickly established there wasn’t a fixed interior design vision or playbook and one had to be born that would be contextual and relevant to them.  We had to clear on just who theTradeDesk were and what was in their DNA.

‘California, the surf, nature, people, community, and technology were just some of the inspirations we started to explore. Integrity in finish and an understated and timeless vibe were the cornerstones for our design.’

‘We conceived an interior that could work as hard as their organisation, provide flexibility for growth, is not ostentatious, yet is respectful to their roots and where it all began; timeless – a design made to last.’

Every single detail here is solely focused on the people and creating a real work/life balance. ‘We looked at how they interact, how they socialise and connect and why people choose to work here,’ Sonia continues. ‘We have created a home to promote and celebrate their culture and to make it easy for people to choose how they wish to use the space. The key architectural build elements help structure their activities but do not in any way restrain them from expressing themselves as individuals.’

Another integral part of the design was to connect people with nature, embracing and utilising as much natural daylight and introducing plants and biophilia to enhance employee wellbeing.

‘Underpinning this whole design is that community and people are right at the heart of it. The large stadia style atrium we have created not only connects them with their larger community around the world, but also sits at the heart of the space, seamlessly connecting the social spaces with the working areas and the more quiet and contemplative areas.

‘The space has been designed to create a landscape that works for everyone. Whether introvert or extrovert, no matter what demographic – this is a home for everyone.’

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