AHR applies innovative biophilic design principles at The Spine building
For the northern home of The Royal College of Physicians, AHR Architects was tasked with creating a building that leaves its occupants healthier.
From agile coworking to socially-minded headquarters, we explore a selection of workplaces developed for changing conventions.
Edyn’s London HQ
The hospitality group is one of the most disruptive forces in the sector, with a portfolio that includes blossoming aparthotel brand Locke and serviced apartment collection, Cove. Its recently redesigned London HQ puts a greater emphasis on sustainable design principles but, crucially, was conceived to better facilitate collaboration and foster community. It’s the result of feedback from a ‘cross-functional internal taskforce’ assembled during the pandemic with the aim of charting how employee needs would change – the final design a collaboration between edyn, Maison August and Atlier Ochre.
Photography: Edmund Dabney
ARC Club’s Camberwell coworking space
ARC Club sidles into vacant small-scale commercial spaces and reconfigures them as bijou coworking sites, with flexibility and autonomy central to the offer. At the Camberwell location, three core zones reflect the pillars of contemporary working practice: a public area with social café, a collaborative area for group work and a quiet area for solitary focus. It was fitted out in just seven weeks, the ground floor unit having stood empty since its development three years previous. Nothing extraneous was added to the building’s shell – a raised floor installed, the ceiling left exposed and pipes lagged in foil.
Photography: Andrew Meredith
Hootsuite’s reimagined ‘nest’
Social media firm Hootsuite turned to its employees (or Owls), when the time came to reimagine its London home. With almost its entire workforce citing a preference for reduced stretches in the office and more remote working, the solution was a space that supports opportunities for connection and offers greater freedom. Where previously desks were allocated, now 80 unassigned workstations are available to book via the Robin app, while 50 were removed entirely to create space for additional community areas. There’s also a heightened emphasis on health, with the introduction of under-desk treadmills and bikes, and a dedicated wellbeing room.
Sidewalk Infrastructure Partners’ New York hub
Set across 3000 sq ft within the Big Apple’s 10 Jay Street building, the offices of Sidewalk Infrastructure Partners may have been primarily executed during the pandemic, but they are also a response to it. Designed by the London-based Sella, the project aimed to be a reflection of changing working habits, which the studio felt would only be accentuated by COVID and its longer term impact. The worlds of workplace and hospitality were merged then, with the scheme channelling the culture and aesthetic of membership clubs and introducing social touchpoints – such as a kombucha and beer station – where spontaneous interaction could flourish.
Zetteler’s inclusive home
Designed by Studio Rhonda, Zetteler’s London offices are a case study in designing for difference. Vegan, deaf-friendly and neurodivergence-considered, the PR firm’s home is intended to benefit not only the in-house team but a wider creative community – a flexible resource to be offered to those in need, from start-ups to charities. Recognising that unadaptable and uncompromising office spaces could soon be relegated to the past, here the idea is simply to create a space that works for as many people as possible, encouraging employees back to an environment where a company culture can be better cultivated.
Photography: Taran Wilkhu
Trayport’s ‘destination’ workplace
The rise of remote working was the catalyst for tech company Trayport’s office redevelopment. Oktra helmed design, building on the concept of a ‘destination’ that engages staff and showcases the company’s values. A social centre was added, where relaxation and cooperation can sit tooth by jowl, while a revision of the overall layout saw meeting rooms moved to the core of the building and desks shift to the perimeter – giving programmers, who by necessity spend the most time at their workstations, better access to natural light. Reuse was prioritised, with existing furniture and finishes retained where possible and sustainability driving specification – such as Vitra chairs that are 85% recyclable at end of life.
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