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AJ Architecture Awards 2018: Workplace of the Year (above 20,000m²)

‘Limitless cash has been well spent,’ said one of our judges of the Stirling Prize-winning Bloomberg European Headquarters, London by Foster + Partners

Bloomberg’s new European headquarters is a workplace powerhouse, and it packed a considerable punch with the judges. ‘It has a generosity to the city and to its users; the detailing is exquisite and, in terms of technology, it’s doing really sophisticated things,’ they explained. ‘There’s a whole story of workplace here: when you’re at your desk you can immerse yourself, be totally engaged; but when you want different work, there are many different spaces where you can go.’

In its form, massing and materials, the new building is a natural extension of the City of London that benefits the immediate public realm. A pedestrian arcade reinstates the ancient Roman road Watling Street, for example, and is now a key route through the Square Mile. The building’s striking façade is defined by a structural sandstone frame, with a series of large-scale bronze fins that shade the floor-to-ceiling glazing.


Central to Bloomberg’s ethos, the double-height ‘pantry’ on the sixth floor forms the heart of the building, reflecting the importance of sharing and collaboration at the company. This notion of teamwork flows into the desking systems and layouts of each floor. Bespoke, height-adjustable, radial desks are laid out in clusters and pods for up to six people, allowing for privacy, personalisation, wellbeing and collaborative working.

The building has a BREEAM Outstanding rating, and the highest design-stage score ever achieved by a major office development.  

‘There’s a sense of really thinking through tactical problems and then solving them,’ applauded our judges. ‘Limitless cash has been well spent.’

Read a building study of the project here

Shortlist

  • London Wall Place by Make Architects
  • Thames Tower by dn-a architecture
  • Two St Peter’s Square by SimpsonHaugh
  • XYZ Spinningfields by Cartwright Pickard