Teams featuring rising stars at Grimshaw, tp bennett and Sheppard Robson have reached the final round in the BCO’s new annual ideas contest inviting young talent to propose an office of the future
The three finalists’ proposals include: an adaptive reuse of an existing terrace of Victorian housing in London as the headquarters for a major energy company; a complex co-locating government, business and university functions in Greenwich; and a flexible network of working environments.
The NextGen Workplace competition sought proposals for a futuristic but achievable office environment suitable for the social, economic, cultural, and technological advances of the year 2035. It was open to emerging architects, designers and developers
Teams were asked to consider the appearance and functionality of their proposed office space and also explore the vision, values and drivers of the occupier and the lifestyle of the end user. Schemes could occupy any site in the UK, with all buildings, spaces, infrastructure, technology, environmental issues and services clearly defined by the applicant. An overall winner will be announced on 15 November.
The jury included BCO president Ken Shuttleworth, founding director of Make Architects. He said: ‘After an intense, stimulating judging process, we’re delighted to reveal the three finalists in our NextGen ideas competition.
‘Each has responded thoughtfully to the brief and put forward a thorough, compelling and beautifully presented proposition. Between them, they’ve offered three very different responses to ways of using urban space, from repurposing existing facilities to providing flexible new-build solutions.
‘These finalists should be congratulated for their creativity and for managing to stand out among the many impressive submissions. We look forward to announcing our winner next month.’
Former BCO president John Forrester, Cushman & Wakefield EMEA chief executive and competition jury member, said: ‘I would like to thank all the teams who entered the competition for their energy, resourcefulness and commitment; we hope all the participants will benefit from the experience.
‘The judges were highly impressed with the clarity of thought behind the submissions, which help demonstrate how innovation and creativity can solve complex problems and turn challenges into industry opportunities. The future of the BCO – and of our industry – is clearly in extremely ambitious and capable hands.’
The BCO was set up in 1990 to research, develop and communicate best practice in all aspects of the office sector. The annual NextGen Workplace Competition is the latest addition to the BCO’s extensive awards programme. Winners of last year’s BCO National awards included HGP Architects’ LandRover Bar HQ in Portsmouth, which topped the innovation category.
The judging panel was chaired by tp bennett director Cristiano Testi, and also included Ben Johnson, director workplace resources EMEA at IHS Markit; Shannon Pope-Ellis, store planning and design director for Estée Lauder Companies; and David Hamilton, director of projects at Malcolm Reading Consultants which advised on the competition’s process and brief.
The overall winner, set to be announced at the BCO Next Gen awards in November, will receive an invitation to attend the 2018 BCO Conference in Berlin with complimentary flights and hotel accommodation.
Finalist: 88mph by Jennifer Barnes, curator and project manager, Futurecity; Laura Hannigan, engineer, associate, AKTII; Annabel Koeck, Project Architect, Grimshaw; Amelia Maxwell – Finance and Commercial Manager, Lendlease
Jennifer Barnes, curator and project manager, Futurecity
Laura Hannigan, engineer, associate, AKTII
Annabel Koeck, project architect, Grimshaw
Amelia Maxwell, finance and commercial manager, Lendlease
88mph propose The Dynamo, an adaptive reuse of an existing terrace of Victorian housing in London as the headquarters for a major energy company. The concept retains the existing façades, and incorporates reconfigurable interior space, service cores plugged into the back of the building as an ‘energy backpack’, and facilities including a rooftop garden with staff allotments, a performance space and a meditation garden. The design responds to a future with increased transport connectivity across the UK: the company’s facilities are accordingly dispersed more widely throughout the country, but they retain a physical presence in the capital that is flexible and open to future changes.
Finalist: Four Future by Chris Campbell – Mechanical Engineer, Norman Disney & Young; Nicola Matthews – Interior Designer, Associate Director, tp bennett; Michael Stanton – Brand Consultant, The Honest Brand; Michelle Wilkie – Interior Designer, Director,
Chris Campbell, mechanical engineer, Norman Disney & Young
Nicola Matthews, interior designer, associate director, tp bennett
Michael Stanton, brand consultant, The Honest Brand
Michelle Wilkie, interior designer, director, tp bennett
Four Future propose ‘The Nest’, set on the Greenwich peninsula surrounding the O2 arena. A public meadow is placed over the top of the existing arena and surrounded by ‘nest’ buildings. The form of these is based on the triple helix, with three occupiers (government, business and university) each occupying a third of the space, stacked in sequence around a central atrium. ‘Garden pods’ at the building’s edge incorporate biophilic design principles and offer access to nature, and a ramp wraps around the exterior of the building, allowing access via a variety of means to all levels.
Finalist: GTASC by Craig Chatley – Senior Associate, Gardiner & Theobald; Maxwell Ikin – Engineer, Cundall; Borja Marcaida – Associate Architect, Sheppard Robson; Tom Place – Structural Engineer, Arup
Craig Chatley, senior associate, Gardiner & Theobald
Maxwell Ikin, engineer, Cundall
Borja Marcaida, associate architect, Sheppard Robson
Tom Place, structural engineer, Arup
GTASC propose ‘Network Space 2035’, a flexible network of working environments. Their central London site, close to the Barbican, the square mile and Farringdon Crossrail, incorporates a ‘Central Hub’ building which will be inhabited by multiple tenants alongside education, public, health and hospitality facilities. Community incubators, remotely connected to the hub, provide alternative working environments and platforms for start-up companies. The building form is adaptable, allowing the creation or reduction of space depending on future needs and uses.