Category Archives: Corporate

Made by Design: EXTRAORDINARY

Connect to the sensory. Low tech, exaggerated textures and natural elements provoke the sense of touch. New landscapes emerge, wild and nomadic, creating a tactile atmosphere to enhance the senses. The expanded plank format, 30.5 x 122 cm (12” x 48”), provides a new sensory experience underfoot.

“Extraordinary is largely inspired by process and pushing current technologies to new heights. Using Tapistron machinery, stray ends of yarn are typically left on the carpet face after tufting. Usually, we take this excess material and shear it, but here, we use it as a styled feature By rethinking technology and modifying the process, this element was exaggerated to inject bold and dramatic texture. Pattern is implied through varied texture and a natural, tonal palette to enhance the relief. Hinting at raised foliage and Nordic landscapes to create moments of respite, we explore the emotions texture can influence – highlighting the user experience underfoot.”
John Crews, Sr. Designer, Workplace


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Studio 103 | Puma Australia – 2016 Design Is…Award Market Winner


Shaw Contract conducted interviews with all firms of all Market Award winning projects from the 2016 Design Is…Award program. As part of this process, we always like to share a portion of the response on our blog for readers to learn about the winning projects. These are their stories.

Describe this project in one word.

Connection.

How does this project demonstrate design impact?

We needed to find a clever way to inject life into the building on a tight budget. The solution came in the way of new flooring. We merged colour and pattern to give direction, connecting different zones without the need for expensive structural elements or signage. Multicoloured herringbone carpet tiles flow out from the general flooring, highlighting specific areas and
facilitating natural meeting points for staff.

Each project is a process. Explain your journey with this space.

Our starting point was a series of dark, dilapidated buildings, disconnected from each other. Our challenge was to create a connected and collaborative office with minimal structural change. By creating strategic openings between buildings we were able to utilize an abandoned courtyard space. The resultant infill space now functions as an informal meeting and working area, complementing the more formal office zones and bringing in much needed natural light. We wanted to highlight the flow of space through each opening in order to enhance the feeling of connectivity. In order to do this, a minimal materials palette was adopted. Singular finishes flow through and up, drawing the eye forward and into adjoining spaces.

Tell us about any challenges or lessons learned from working on this project.

With a tight budget, it was apparent that would need to minimize changes made to the existing buildings and come up with a clever way of connecting them. Having a low budget doesn’t necessarily mean you can do less with the space, you just need to be more creative in the way you do it. A lot of care was taken to create openings in the most strategic locations to open up sightlines throughout the office and bring in the outdoors. There is a new feeling of openness.
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On trends: Is there anything in particular with this project that is reflective of current culture/society?

This project strongly reflects the current trend of bringing the outside in. Sightlines were opened up throughout the space, allowing natural light to flow through giving dark corners a new life and energy.

Bringing plants into office spaces is becoming the norm. They are not only visually appealing but invigorate the office atmosphere by bringing in oxygen. Complimentary styles add a new organic energy to an otherwise corporate interior.

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IA Interior Architects | Sapient Nitro – 2016 Design Is…Award Market Winner


Shaw Contract conducted interviews with all firms of all Market Award winning projects from the 2016 Design Is…Award program. As part of this process, we always like to share a portion of the response on our blog for readers to learn about the winning projects. These are their stories.

Describe this project in one word.

Energetic

How does this project demonstrate design impact?

One of the biggest project goals was to create a buzz of activity that engages employees and visitors alike. As part of this effort, we worked with SapientNitro to develop a tour route so clients can experience the brand and culture firsthand. The result is a path, known as Main Street, which runs from the main entry hub to the far end of the office. Along the way, visitors encounter work zones, edit bays, think tanks and a wide variety of meeting spaces. The success of the design is really expressed on this route with an unmistakable sense of creative energy flowing through the office.

Each project is a process. Explain your journey with this space.

Tours of existing locations and visioning sessions with key leaders enabled us to dive into the culture of the local group to understand the drivers for the agency’s new office. A key factor was not only understanding the Sapient team, but also understanding the neighboring competition, and how to differentiate the Sapient brand and physical space. The concept for Creative Crates, an abstract representation of how SapientNitro builds and delivers new ideas, is key to the design solution. These shipping crate-inspired structures, clad in reclaimed wood, create distinctive zones where groups can collaborate. Each one includes a unique super graphic, along with a different set of furnishings to support a particular work style.

Tell us about any challenges or lessons learned from working on this project.

The greatest project challenge emerged from the unusual site conditions we started with – a raw parking structure and several former retail bays. To transform these spaces into a cohesive office required frequent site visits to address unexpected conditions discovered during demolition. For instance, when a 2-foot change in floor level was discovered in the planned Social Operations room, we added a seat pad and turned this obstruction into built-in bench seating. By embracing the unique features of the building envelope, these components became an integral part of the design solution.

On trends: Is there anything in particular with this project that is reflective of current culture/society?

In today’s society, we have more choice than ever. We can choose where to live, where to work, and a career that suits our unique talents and passions. This project fosters creativity by providing a wide variety of choices for when, where and how to work. From quiet work zones to active think tank spaces, the unique plan offers an assortment of meeting rooms, cafés and collaborative areas. The space even includes a theatre for showcasing the agency’s video productions on a grand scale. But when it comes to choice, the Creative Crates prevail, each one providing a different set of amenities to facilitate a wide range of work styles.

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Paragon Interiors | Zenith Optimedia – 2016 Design Is…Market Award Winner


Shaw Contract conducted interviews with all firms of all Market Award winning projects from the 2016 Design Is…Award program. As part of this process, we always like to share a portion of the response on our blog for readers to learn about the winning projects. These are their stories.

Describe this project in one word.

Innovative.

How does this project demonstrate design impact?

The use of dramatic design elements instantly creates interest and draws in the viewer, client or passerby. By use of elements such as the oversized “ZO” lightbox in reception and the stretched canvas ceiling in the boardroom – both visible from the building atrium – curiosity is created before even entry. Once inside, the office space is filled with bold features and bright blue accents, the most striking of which is the round, blue pod at the heart of the interior, creating a memorable hub in the journey through the space for both visitors and employees.

Each project is a process. Explain your journey with this space.

The Paragon Interiors team spent many hours collaborating with our client, ensuring a thorough and detailed understanding of the inner workings of the Zenith Optimedia/Newcast team. By taking into account the requirements, as well as a history of the company, we developed the idea of the “Tree of Opportunities”, based on the concept of African children sitting under a tree, learning from their elders, sharing knowledge. Cognizant of the international standard of their various branches worldwide, we maintained a strong African connection, and most importantly, creating a corporate yet playful office interior. Each design element relates to the big idea of the “Tree of Opportunities”, from the tree-like pod design, to the dappled shadow effects of the carpet pattern, the design works together harmoniously, telling a single story.

Tell us about any challenges or lessons learned from working on this project.

As with all projects, it was important to design with budget in mind. This project required some highly creative thinking to achieve the desired outcome and to achieve the look and feel within the given budget. Another challenge was that the office space had very little access to natural light as the majority of the space was close to the core of the building. We dealt with this by allocating the staff café area to the space with exterior views – allowing equal access to all employees and creating a multi-functional space where employees are encouraged to collaborate, meet and work throughout the day. With the lack of external views, it was important to create visual cues internally, giving us the creative freedom to come up with various interesting and unexpected feature elements. The most important lesson learned was that nothing is impossible when the creative juices are flowing – budgets and space restrictions may set the boundaries, but the end result is up to your imagination.

On trends: Is there anything in particular with this project that is reflective of current culture/society?

The layout and design of the space is based on the concept of collaboration, which has become a vital part in the trend of office space design in the last few years. Our design provides inviting spaces which are easily accessible and designed with the intention of prompting the sharing of ideas. The informal nature of the space sets clients as well as employees at ease, allowing the natural flow of conversation to take place.

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Asym Interiors | Telegeography – 2016 Design Is…Award Market Winner


Shaw Contract conducted interviews with all firms of all Market Award winning projects from the 2016 Design Is…Award program. As part of this process, we always like to share a portion of the response on our blog for readers to learn about the winning projects. These are their stories.

Describe this project in one word.

Linear.

How does this project demonstrate design impact?

To express the workflow process, circulation was magnified and brought to the forefront of the design. Physical injunctions to the space were kept low or transparent to encourage interaction and visual connection between staff that largely works and communicates digitally. Maintaining small-scale individual workspace urges teams to meet elsewhere throughout the space, in either the formal conference room or informal teaming areas. These teaming areas are delineated by solid partitions that provide opportunity for writable surfaces. All other partitions are glass to open up the internal zone and express the linearity of the space.

Each project is a process. Explain your journey with this space.

The flooring has a focusing impact within the space, both emphasizing the linearity of the office circulation while likewise softening the overall impact of its narrowness. The carpet follows the natural light path of the space – from a light, neutral palette within the perimeter offices, transitioning to a medium gray before then gradating to a dark gray along the interior, where the spaces are larger and can successfully support saturated hues. A dramatic blue stripe then punctuates the carpet palette to accentuate and define circulation by providing a marked visual differentiator. Strong accent color is used throughout the space to define zones as well as to bracket the space. This evokes TeleGeography’s beautiful work product, informational mapping, where color is used to accentuate and to inform rather than to decorate.

Tell us about any challenges or lessons learned from working on this project.

This project had a limited budget in a standard commercial office building in Washington DC with limited ceiling heights. This project was greatly informed by the foremost intention to reduce their footprint with respect to both real estate and construction material footprint. With their new space TeleGeography was able to maintain the same square footage as their original suite while increasing the staff count by over 30% and incorporate amenities such as a wellness room and teaming spaces.

On trends: Is there anything in particular with this project that is reflective of current culture/society?

The space is on trend with the client’s largely digital practice that allows for a reduction of workspace not needed to house or display paper files or offices to support hierarchy. Strategic
planning of the space included moving all staff to an equalized workspace; their workspace was divisible not by hierarchy but rather by the function of the work produced within that space. Enclosed glass front offices, placed on the perimeter where light filters through the offices to the interior provide audible privacy; workstations are designed to provide visual privacy via custom- built screens, but benefit from the filtered light.

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