COMMERCIAL WORKPLACE

 

National/Regional Winner London (Inside M25)
The Asticus Building, 21 Palmer Street

7_4_asticus_building

Project Client:

IVG Asticus Real Estate

Owner:

IVG Asticus Real Estate

Project Manager:

Buro Four

Quantity Surveyor:

RLF

Architect:

Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands

Interior Designer:

Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands

M&E Engineer:

Waterman Building Services

Structural Engineer:

Adams Kara Taylor

Contractor:

ISG InteriorExterior

Developer:

IVG Asticus Real Estate

Concept Architect:

Foggo Associates


IVG Asticus has produced a landmark building on a site so difficult that it had lain idle for 25 years despite being in the heart of Westminster. The distinctive 28m circular shape is a response to providing access for light despite neighbouring buildings up to seven storeys as little as a metre away.

Its success is much due to plans by Foggo & Associates, which were substantially maintained by project architect Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands. The building was designed following extensive studies of circular buildings in other parts of Europe. Problems with central cores and awkward floor layouts were overcome by a 'blister core' in a sheltered corner at the back of the main floor. This has enabled each 6,500 sq. ft. floor plate panoramic views across the building.

The developer's experience with the same team (architect, construction manager, QS and engineers) meant a fine tuning of the cladding/frame detailing allowed simultaneous, just-in-time construction of frame and pre-cast cladding panels using a single tower crane on a site with zero space for manoeuvring and storage.

When leaving the lifts there is a tremendous feeling of space and light from floor-to-ceiling glazing panels. The entrance is elegant and spacious with artwork providing a dramatic introduction to the building, although the judges felt more might have been made of the reception by re-siting the lobby to allow a coffee bar or commercial activity.

The circular form provides unusual and demanding workspaces, but with relatively few structural columns and careful use of ceiling and floor tile grid layouts, the building can be designed to take a number of differing layouts. There was also some doubt over details such as potential long term staining from rainwater run-off but otherwise the building has tackled major technical and design challenges with pared-down simplicity and elegance. Light fittings and grilles complement the building's circular nature.

Designers and those dealing with the mechanical and electrical services have worked hard to match BCO standards. Just as importantly, they have met all the client's commercial demands, enabling multi-occupancy, flexibility and providing good net/gross ratios. The building has proven itself by pre-letting at record rents and the judges found it refreshing to hear a developer boasting completion on time/budget and that "everyone on the project made some money".


Regional Winner Commercial Workplace North of England, North Wales and Northern Ireland
301/302 Bridgewater Place, Birchwood Park, Warrington

7_4_birchwood_park

Project Client:

MEPC Birchwood Park

Owner:

MEPC Birchwood Park

Project Manager:

APE Project Management

Quantity Surveyor:

APE Project Management

Architect:

BDP

Interior Designer:

BDP

M&E Engineer:

Crookes Walker Consulting

Structural Engineer:

Capita

Contractor:

ROK

Developer:

MEPC Birchwood Park


The regional judges declared it 'a joy' to visit this project because so much thought had been given to the context within which the building sits and the manner in which people move around. The buildings are simple and very good value. The developer and design team have shown great skill in creating both an excellent workplace and environment. The entrances are straight forward, easy to find and well marked, using the form, aspect and the landscape in unity.

This is another example from designer BDP, a two-time BCO Best of the Best winner, of a crisp and clean design that delivers. It is a classic example of offices more normally seen in the South and around London and shows a welcome expansion of choice for occupiers.

A great young team of designers and developers planned four buildings to create a 'pavilion in parkland'. Displacing car parking to the rear has created a formal space between the buildings which is calm and beautifully detailed.


Regional Winner Commercial Workplace Scotland
Aurora, 120 Bothwell Street, Glasgow

7_4_aurora

Project Client:

Commercial Estates Group

Owner:

AB Dooba

Project Manager:

Mackenzie Partnership

Quantity Surveyor:

Gardiner & Theobald

Architect:

Cooper Cromar

Interior Designer:

Cooper Cromar

M&E Engineer:

KJ Tait

Structural Engineer:

Woolgar Hunter

Contractor:

HBG

Investment/Property Company:

AB Dooba

Developer:

AB Dooba


Big, ballsy and commercially successful, Aurora was conceived, built and brought into the Glasgow market at just the right time. It is a stylish, flexible and very successful speculative office building constructed for a modest cost.

Success was achieved by providing large floors divisible into different sized units. Although deeper than recommended by the BCO, they feel light and open, even when fitted out because of full height glazing on three sides.

Aurora announces its presence with a concave glass façade but also has carefully designed secondary elevations in limestone. The entrance is large and impressive - appropriate for a building of this size, according to the regional panel, although one national judge considered it too dominant and a drag on flexibility.

Commercial Estates is congratulated for boldness in building nearly 180,000 sq ft over 10 floors on what was then the fringe of the office core. Glasgow is never an easy letting market and has been prone to over-supply, but the building let quickly at record rents.


Regional Winner Commercial Workplace South of England (Outside M25 and South Wales)
200, 250 Fowler Avenue, Farnborough Business Park

7_4_fowler_avenue

Project Client:

Slough Estates

Owner:

Slough Estates

Project Manager:

Slough Estates International

Quantity Surveyor:

Gardiner & Theobald

Architect:

Allies and Morrison

M&E Engineer:

Foreman Roberts

Structural Engineer:

WSP (London)

Contractor:

Carillion (Farnborough)

Developer:

Slough Estates International


This pair of pavilions developed by SEGRO have achieved a level of quality rarely seen in a business park. They contribute significantly to the success of the master plan and the central square at the heart of the park. Adjacent to the Hub (a national prize winner), they have a fine outlook across a landscaped amenity area and hauntingly sculptural reconstructed former airship hanger. They form part of pedestrian routes from the hangar to the Historic Quarter and between the Square and The Hub.

The modern, flexible offices conform to BCO standards and provide floor by floor or even sub-divisible letting potential. Building forms are commendably simple and efficient, the orthogonal plans incorporating single cores and external fire escapes to optimise the open-plan floor space. Double-height entrances and a magnificent open staircase reinforce the sense of place. Use of terracotta as the principal facing material with infill panels of glass and aluminium is a triumph. Further efficiencies are achieved by escapes which, similarly clad in terracotta, compliment the strength and simplicity of the exterior.

Speculative offices seldom attain high standards of sustainability but some thought has been applied and a very good BREEAM rating is achievable. Aside from the brownfield site, small but relevant measures to improve energy efficiency have been implemented and recycled materials used in construction.

Overall this is a fine example of what can be achieved through good design, sensible procurement and well managed construction without excessive cost.