COMMERCIAL WORKPLACE

Projects listed below are the winners for the Commercial Workplace Award 2009. 

 


BEST OF THE BEST
NATIONAL AND REGIONAL WINNER
LONDON AND THE SOUTH EAST

KINGS PLACE, 90 YORK WAY, LONDON

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Project Client:

Parabola Land

Owner:

Parabola Land

Project Manager:

Gardiner & Theobald

Quantity Surveyor:

Gardiner & Theobald

Brief Consultant

ZZA Responsive User Environments

Architect:

Dixon Jones

M&E Engineer:

Arup

Structural Engineer:

Arup

Contractor:

Sir Robert McAlpine

Developer:

Parabola Land


Kings Place was praised for its exquisite design and clever construction, including the deepest propped basement ever built in London. It really captured the judges inspiration with its brave approach to regeneration, transforming a derelict site into a standard-setting 21st century office space with public spaces that are immersed in culture and inextricably linked to community.

Once every decade or so a building comes along that alters the common understanding of what is commercially possible. Kings Place has not just moved the goalposts - it rewrote the book on how commercial property can integrate with the life of a city. In a rare year of judging when half a dozen projects emerged with potential to win plaudits as the best office building in Britain, this one still stood out.

Planners are forcing commercial developers into mixed use to revive the 24-hour life of city centres. Too often this is grudgingly conceded with gestures towards housing or public access. Kings Place throws its arms wide, inviting the world into galleries, concert and meeting spaces.

This could have won the BCO award even as a pure office block because of its exquisite design and clever construction. Parabola Land's Peter Millican deserves the highest praise. This was the personal vision of an outsider who had never built in London, yet had the determination to show bigger names a new path. So too do designers Dixon Jones for such a stunning interpretation of ideas.

This building is open-hearted, immersed in culture and life giving. The public uses are not superficial but integral to the structure and inextricably linked to community.

It was all done with no public subsidy. The scheme has a sound commercial heart, transforming a derelict site into a 21st century headquarters, built, to BCO standards, for the Guardian News and Media, and Network Rail.

The arts brief began as a modest 250-seat auditorium but discussions with bodies such as the Royal Academy of Music showed London's need for a larger recital hall. This also had to be flexible enough for conferences and meetings, so double-height spaces were added. For a major commercial undertaking, this demonstrated huge faith in the spirit of the project. A less ambitious approach may have been more economic but would not have provided such a landmark.

Huge praise is due to Sir Robert McAlpine and Arup for solving the technical challenge of creating the deepest propped basement ever built in London and the structural transfer to large office floors above. All this was achieved while maintaining natural, flowing public spaces apparently unencumbered by commercial activity above and with an airiness that belies any feeling of being below ground.


REGIONAL WINNER
THE MIDLANDS AND EAST ANGLIA

INNOVATION CENTRE, 110 BUTTERFIELD, LUTON

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Project Client:

Luton Borough Council

Owner:

Luton Borough Council

Project Manager:

King Sturge

Quantity Surveyor:

Davis Langdon

Architect:

Hopkins Architects

Interior Designer:

Hopkins Architects

M&E Engineer:

Cundall Johnston & Partners

Structural Engineer:

Adams Kara Taylor

Contractor:

Marriott Construction

Developer:

East of England Development Agency


The ability of this building to bring together people, provide a wide range of facilities and act as a hub for many functions truly represents itself in the finished article. This building is another excellent example of how quality can be achieved even within a tight budget and challenging conditions a theme that is always welcome in BCO Awards.

This project is an exceptional example of how to listen to a client brief and execute something that matches it perfectly. The way in which the innovative nature of the building feeds through to its target audience is very clear and evidently the bedrock of its success.


REGIONAL WINNER
THE NORTH OF ENGLAND, NORTH WALES AND NORTHERN IRELAND

3 HARDMAN STREET, SPINNINGFIELDS, MANCHESTER

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Project Client:

Allied London Properties

Project Manager:

Gardiner & Theobald Management Services

Quantity Surveyor:

Gardiner & Theobald

Architect:

Sheppard Robson Architects

M&E Engineer:

Roger Preston & Partners

Structural Engineer:

Capita Symonds

Contractor:

Bovis Lend Lease

Developer:

Allied London Properties


3 Hardman Street in Manchester continues the bold architectural and office programme for Spinningfields. This large scheme provides flexibility to the landlord to subdivide the large floor plates through its clever planning and organisation of cores. It continues the strong belief in quality and design which has made Spinningfields so successful.

Judges felt that this project, with its scale, flexibility of floor plate and significant contribution to its urban setting was the overall winner. Despite a complex site with a substation on the main street, the project was delivered in an exceptionally short timescale with no loss of quality.

 

REGIONAL WINNER
SCOTLAND

EHQ, 2 SOUTH GYLE CRESCENT, EDINBURGH

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Project Client:

Premier Property Group

Owner:

Premier Property Group

Project Manager:

Cyril Sweett

Quantity Surveyor:

CBA

Brief Consultant:

Michael Laird Architects

Architect:

Michael Laird Architects

Interior Designer:

Michael Laird Architects

M&E Engineer:

RSP Consulting Engineers

Structural Engineer:

ACIES

Contractor:

Laing O'Rourke Scotland

Developer:

Premier Property Group


The judges described this as an excellent example of flexible speculative office accommodation.Sitting on a prominent corner site at the gateway to South Gyle Business Park, its open plan offices provide Edinburgh with the largest single floor plate at 9,144m with generous ceiling heights of 2.9 m.

Its attractive full height glazing and coloured glass, broken up with an irregular rhythm of mullions between floors, presents an impressive building on arrival. The simple but elegant double height reception with bespoke reception desk seals this sense of arrival, and whilst the judges considered its entrance not to be in the obvious location, this is explained by its design within a wider master plan of more buildings yet to be built.

The building has a four pipe fan coil air conditioning unit that provides excellent flexibility but yet it has still achieved a BREEAM rating of very good and achieved exceptionally good results in an air leakage test. It has also achieved an EPC rating of B+.

The judges felt that its generous size, quality and considered design lifts the spirits as does the view in to the courtyard with its specially commissioned art.


REGIONAL WINNER
SOUTH WEST OF ENGLAND AND SOUTH WALES

MEPC CENTRAL 40, CHINEHAM PARK, BASINGSTOKE

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Project Client:

MEPC

Owner:

MEPC

Project Manager:

MEPC

Quantity Surveyor:

Davis Langdon

Architect:

Michael Sparks Associates

M&E Engineer:

Hoare Lea & Partners

Structural Engineer:

Glanville Consultants

Contractor:

Mace

Investment/Property Co:

MEPC

Developer:

MEPC


A 12,800m² speculative office development on an established business park. The front façade incorporating cedar panelling complements the backdrop of mature trees, whilst the cladding combining elements of curtain walling and metal and timber rain screen systems, provides visual interest. The design naturally draws visitors toward the entrance which features a two-storey, glazed reception hall.

The judges were impressed with the overall commitment of the design team, in particular to reduce the carbon footprint of the development by embracing park wide initiatives around waste management, public transport, cycling and walking.

The planning grid offers a wide range of fit-out options at a much lower cost than in a conventional building and delivers an attractive working environment with a clean, flexible floor plate. This building will provide occupiers with low cost operating solutions and the long-term owner with a future proofed building that should guarantee superior returns.