Blackfriars, London, UK
7,750 sq ft
Jack Pringle @ Pringle Brandon
Set on the north bank of the Thames, this imposing centre with its proxim-ity to St Paul’s Cathedral was hailed as the ‘wonder building of modern commerce’ when commissioned in the 1920s. But by the turn of the century it was looking tired and drab. Unilever rejected relocation in favour of maintaining the unique heritage to house some of the best brands in the world.
Pringle Brandon was asked to breathe new life into the stunning, yet under-performing, space and bring back the original spirit of openness as well as achieving a high level of sustainability. We worked alongside KPF who were responsible for the shell and core refurbishment.
The interior was remodelled to create internal visibility, recover organisa-tional legibility to the floor space, im-prove light and encourage the public back into the building.
New windows in the preserved fa-çades provide stunning views of the Thames for staff and visitors from breakout areas and meeting rooms. The rear has been glazed and a unique walkway and platform system dubbed ‘flying carpets’ suspended within the atrium for easy circula-tion between floors. Workspace is arranged as a series of layers, the atrium is surrounded by a ‘boule-vard’ for staff circulation allowing views and visible movement. Primary open plan workspace is towards the building perimeter; a loop of informal meeting and team spaces sit between the two, featuring large changeable branding walls and colourful light fit-tings. The branding walls offer an op-portunity for an ever changing display of Unilever’s uplifting imagery.
The renovated building provides an inspiring and invigorating workplace that can be shared with visitors and the public.
• Three office floors
• Executive suite and boardroom
• Informal teamworking area around atrium Product walls to showcase brand news and products
• High levels of acoustic privacy
• Vibrant brand-derived imagery