The theme of learning seems to sew this issue together nicely.
Our cover story this month explores how long-established brands such as Aviva and Barclays have wised up to the fact that they need to attract more digital natives in order to grow their businesses and stay competitive. This has been a learning curve for these big firms, but they have realised that their offices and crucially where they are located – not to mention the provision of good coffee and agile working environments – offer them the chance to win over this generation of tech-savvy workers, as much as the salaries and benefits package they offer.
Above: HLW’s new Digital Garage for Aviva on Hoxton Square. Photo by Hufton + Crow.
To convey the message of the story we chose ultra-talented graphic artist Paul Pateman aka Pâté, who has designed this month’s cover. We were immediately taken with his bold and witty approach to illustration – which has drawn top class clientele such as Google, British Airways and The Washington Post – and knew it would be perfect to depict the two sides of this tale.
One of our OnSite stories this month looks at how another blue chip firm, in this case Deloitte, has moved from a traditional cellular environment to a fully flexible floorplate, with a good deal of design nous from architect Arney Fender Katsalidis. Pamela Buxton gets the lowdown on that project for us. Meanwhile Caroline Kamp discovers what exactly a grand piano is doing in a Mayfair office scheme…
Above: The Office Space in Town, Mayfair, by Peldon Rose and Sam Kopsch Studio. Photo by Matthew Beedle.
Inspiration strikes in the most unusual ways and nowhere is this more true than outdoor clothing company Berghaus. Its whizzy new workplace by Rock Townsend takes some of its design cues from everything from dry cleaners to rugged mountain terrain. And, though it might look like it’s carved out of the side of a volcano, this month’s civic project, the Jordanki concert hall in Poland, is actually achieved by some clever material trickery, in this case concrete mixed with red brick.
This month also marks our annual education special. We take a look at a clutch of British universities including Bournemouth, Sheffield and Newcastle and how they are blurring the boundaries between what constitutes a university environment and a modern workplace. This section also features a play area designed by revered young architect Asif Khan and a design and technology department by Squire & Partners.
Above: The Diamond at the University of Sheffield by Twelve architects. Photo by Jack Hobhouse.
OnTopic for April looks at the creative placemaking at work in Croydon, including a new underground art gallery and a new creative director appointed for the borough. This is something OnOffice will be exploring further at a talk on the London stand of the MIPIM property exhibition in Cannes. From south London to the south of France, if you will.
April issue is out today.
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