The Big Issue
We got a call from a client in Cremorne, Inlite, to have a look at their space and discuss how they had to bring three completely different teams together to become one. Gerrard Lighting, Inlite and Retail Light were all to become one cohesive unit.
What We Found
We found they had beautiful natural light coming in the windows, but they had all the windows covered up by fixed offices. They had very little, inadequate meeting spaces, and we had to fit the three teams on the one floor. We also found we had to address issues of noise transfer, and heating and cooling loss between the two levels because of an open air lock and open two story stairwell void. And we found that the works had to continue whilst the building was in occupation.
How We Solved It
We came up with a design that retained the fixed offices, and the rest of the floor was filled out with workstations. This not only fulfilled budget constraints, but was to the satisfaction of the very loyal long-term employees of Inlite who’d been there for over 30 years. This design had been signed off on and we were all ready to go, and suddenly we saw an opportunity to do better for the company. We got a call from Gerard Lighting, the parent company, who had a much more dynamic culture, whose aim was to merge the three cultures into one and take the company successfully into the future.
Ultimately, we proposed a new design where we removed all the glass offices against the windows that were taking precious natural light. We solved the noise issue between the ground floor and the upper level by creating a glass airlock that separated the two spaces, which additionally helped us manage the heating and cooling.
We solved the lack of meeting room spaces on the ground floor and showroom by creating three slick glass meeting rooms, which allowed all their lighting products to be displayed through and beyond, whilst they were having private meetings in there dealing with architects and suppliers and customers of large developments.
On the upper level, we created a two-stage construct program so we could transfer all the staff from the upper level down to the ground floor showroom, setting them up temporarily to give us the top floor to work on. We removed all the glass offices, creating instead management pods along the internal walls for the loyal staff that had been there many years. The management pods have dividers created by planter boxes and acoustic panelling, which gives them a sense of privacy and a sense of seniority. Running right across the front and side with all the beautiful natural light we installed workstations with acoustic panelling, with a very restful feel and with awesome lighting provided by Inlite.
We also installed planter boxes throughout the workstations to bring in an element of biophilia and create extra storage capacity.
We successfully brought all three cultures into one new vibrant, light filled, happy space, which takes advantage of the glorious natural light and the amazing heritage building. We were able to achieve compliance in all areas, giving the team a stunning environment to thrive and do their best work.