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North East Connected

Hopping Across The North East From Hub To Hub


ByDave Stopher

Jun 14, 2018

Want to know who won ‘Office Building Of The Year Award’ by Archdaily?

One of the World’s busiest Architectural Websites is Archdaily. Their peer-based, crowdsourced Architecture Award has winners chosen by over 75,000 votes from ArchDaily readers around the world. The Office Building of the Year Award went to the BBVA Bancomer Tower in Mexico City designed by LegoRogers.

The 50-storey office tower marks a gateway to Chapultepec Park with sky gardens every nine floors overlooking the city and the park. The architecture aims to promote a sense of community and interaction between staff. In the lobby, glass elevators face the park and will transport visitors arriving by foot, as well as the employees up to the sky lobby at level 12. The sky lobby is a window to the city and the park. This area will be used for exhibitions and public events and connects the hall and dining room with terraces overlooking Chapultepec Park.

The external braced frame provides the seismic structural system to the building allowing the core to be arranged diagonally organising office space on two sides. The result moves away from the traditional centre core, four-sided floor layout. The façade design is inspired by the Mexican traditions and architectural heritage. The geometry of the diagonal structure is used to create a lattice frame to protect the façade from direct light and heat from the sun. As a result, the building has been awarded a Gold LEED energy standard.

Who Has Won Architectural Awards For Refurbishing London Office Buildings in 2018?

Percy & Company were one of many RIBA London Award Winners for their refurbishment of Derwent London’s Mayfair Art Deco Offices, the award event having been held on 15th May 2018.

The BD Architect of the Year Awards was held at the Westminster Park Plaza Hotel in April 2018. Piercy & Company also won the award for Office Architect of the Year for the refurbishment of 25 Savile Row.

Piercy & Company were commissioned for the refurbishment of 25 Savile Row as well as for the fit-out of Derwent London’s new offices. Spread over three floors in an L-shaped building, the offices include a dedicated street level entrance, reception and exhibition area, meeting rooms, break-out spaces, open plan offices, terraces and staff eating areas. Additional space in the building was created by adding a winter garden and external terraces off the ground and second floor, providing informal outdoor space for employees.

The most significant structural intervention was the cutting of a three-storey atrium through the floor slabs and the suspension of a sculptural stair. The stair opened up the circulation routes, connecting what were once isolated floors and departments by making the journey between floors inviting and easy. On each floor, informal collaborative and social spaces are located next to the stair to further stimulate interaction and visually connect departments.

What about Big London Offices that have Won Architectural Awards in 2018?

One of several London winners of the RIBA (Royal Institute of British Architects) 2018 London Awards was the new Bloomberg office. Occupying a whole block within the city, this project designed by Foster and Partners is a large office building to house all Bloomberg employees under one roof for the first time. Externally the building incorporates a covered walkway all around its perimeter. There is also a new street created, carving the building into two blocks connected by bridges.

After entering the building, one moves through an architectural procession to the lifts. This procession includes ‘the vortex’ which is an art piece, one of several throughout the scheme. The lifts – specially designed – take you to a mid-level floor where the main concourse / café space is located. Desks and workspaces are then distributed in clusters accessible from a winding curved ramp, which curls through the building linking the various levels.

Externally the building is of an appropriate scale to the surroundings. It seeks to create a dialogue with some very old neighbouring buildings Internally, the concourse level is very vibrant, buzzing with activity and isolated from its surroundings. There’s a sense of Willy Wonka about the space. It is here that the real success of the project starts to emerge. Everywhere you look there is an inventive detail. From the bespoke folded aluminium ceiling ‘roses’ to the magnetic floorboards. The aim of the building was to avoid standard office space and in this, it succeeds.

What About Award Winning Architecture That Benefits London’s Communities Too?

The New London Architecture Awards for 2018 will take place on 4th July 2018, but the Mayor’s Prize in 2017 was for the Central Parade Creative Hub, E17 by Gort Scott Architects for London Borough of Waltham Forest.

Last year the London Borough of Waltham Forest commissioned the refurbishment of the Central Parade with funding help from the GLA. The project has seen the former 1960s office building reborn as a new cultural and creative enterprise hub designed by young architectural practice, Gort Scott. Central Parade is now home to 650 sqm of retail and co-working spaces with meeting rooms, flexible event and exhibition space, small ‘maker’ shops available for those who wish to pilot new products or services, and studio units for up to 50 independent creative businesses.

Already home to an independent start-up bakery and café run by Hackney artisan sourdough bread company Today Bread, the Central Parade is operated by Meanwhile Space, a social enterprise that specialises in delivering temporary and affordable workspaces that benefit local communities.

‘We stripped back the linings of the outdated council one-stop shop; the lowered ceilings, carpets, partitioned desks etc, to create a generous, robust hall-like space,’ says Jay Gort, director of Gort Scott, who also developed a range of bespoke furniture for the project. ‘Simultaneously, we ensured that the façades of this landmark building were sensitively updated to re-establish the building’s positive contribution to the streetscape’.

From the outside, subtle updates indicate the building’s change in use; the underside of the wave canopy has been painted a vibrant yellow, two new street entrances have been introduced, new signage has been added and bicycle parking has been instated.

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