Woods Bagot’s Brisbane studio has relocated, transforming the old Reserve Bank building on Adelaide Street into a collaborative and sustainable destination for over 55 of the firm’s design minds. Overlooking King George Square in the city’s CBD, the design focuses on engaging and connecting with the city.
Woods Bagot Principal Mark Damant said the studio was about creating a sense of arrival and instant immersion, with the design encouraging transparency from reception through to workspaces. Inviting visitors into the space, the design allows guests to see how teams work. “Collaboration is critical to our design studio environment. Open, shared zones are supported by a series of workspaces that allow our designers to choose an appropriate space dependent on task,” he said.
Embracing the existing building’s 1970’s modernism, original structural materials have been retained, paired alongside warm, solid timbers used to create an open and honest workspace. Large timber tables are located throughout the studio with proximity to work benches facilitating dynamic interaction and enhanced creativity. A nod to the past, the original day holdings vault and door has been retained, transformed into one of the meeting rooms as a quirky reminder of the building’s history. Responding to a large, deep floor plate, the design draws natural light into the interiors via a custom glazing façade along King George Square. A new internal façade connects the interior workspace with Adelaide Street, simultaneously activating the foyer of the building.
“An original 1960’s sculpture by Norma Redpath is located in the foyer. The design showcases the view of the sculpture within the interior via a laneway created between the two glass meeting rooms, further strengthening the connection to the original structure.” said Brownyn McColl, Brisbane Lifestyle Leader.
Local industry professionals were engaged to provide the joinery, workstations, collaborative meeting tables and loose furniture. Woods Bagot believes strongly in supporting local crafts people and manufacturers, therefore connecting with local suppliers that provide Australian and Brisbane made products. The intelligent design adopts a sustainable approach to the fit-out, utilising the practice’s embedded knowledge of the impact office buildings have on occupants as well as the environment.
Woods Bagot’s design for the Brisbane studio was shortlisted at the 2015 International Green Interior Awards in the Office category. The International Green Interior Awards was a platform created by Australian Living in 2011 to inspire interior designers and architects to realise the beauty and benefits of integrating green interior products into projects. The fit-out was shortlisted for the 2015 Interior Design Excellence Awards for Workplace under 1,000 m2.
Woods Bagot Brisbane key studio projects include CBUS Properties’ new $650m Queensland Government headquarters building at 1 William Street, the revitalisation project at Howard Smith Wharves and 111 Mary Street, including The Westin Brisbane & Mary Lane luxury residential tower.
Design: Woods Bagot
Photography: Scott Burrows