Large airy atriums of office blocks today give employees and clients alike, real freedom to choose how and where they work. With laptops and mobile phones in hand, the people can now select from many different types of work settings, ranging from indoor quiet spaces and collaborative hubs, to Wi-Fi-enabled balconies and places to stand and work. Then alongside the huge expanses of glazing capturing the outdoor natural light, the clever Circadian lighting in certain areas of the Atrium’s space mimics natural daylight patterns supporting people’s biorhythms. Much of today’s building’s strategy for efficiency lies in its exacting approach to the allocation of space. A lot of big bluechip companies, such as GlaxoSmithKline for example, institute what it calls a “SMART Working” program, doing away with personal desks and instead relying on shared spaces organized into areas called “neighbourhoods.” For the roughly 1,300 employees based in their Philadelphia HQ, the designers included 1,035 desks, and stated; “nobody has an office, even the president of the company shares a space, just like everybody else.” The central street of an Atrium draws staff out of their quiet work zones into a lively hub comprising common areas and meeting room, with furniture to suit.
Medibank Place – 720 Bourke Street
Strategy Plus – Heinz – Netherlands
Atrium – Yandex HQ Second Stage
WorkAC – Wieden +Kennedy
Tierra Design/POD – Singapore’s Central Business District
Camenzind Evolution – Google
We many not make Atriums into Yoga spaces, like WorkAC, but we have designed a few spaces with ‘wow factor’ . Our most recent one is the Atrium completed for the UKs’ number 1 Investment Supermarket. Light, airy, modern, open but with private corners, it’s well worth a look.