Van der Grift en Valkenburg Utrecht
building services adviser:
BAM techniek The Hague
Consultancy and research bureau Sardes has its offices at an A1 location in La Vie, right in the centre of Utrecht. With a new interior, the existing office floor has been functionally, commercially and aesthetically modernized in order to give an even better interpretation of the aim of Sardes, to increase the development opportunities of children and teenagers.
In close consultation with the Sardes core group, JHK produced a design in which a pleasant working environment, 'the Workplace' and a new meeting centre 'the Deepening' flow together to create a powerful and inviting sum total. Because staff are less and less tied to their own workplace and contact with colleagues or clients is very important, the existing lay-out of rooms was transformed into a transparent work-floor that can be arranged flexibly with a wide range of places to work and meet others. As a meeting place for policy, knowledge and training and a breeding ground for new ideas, 'the Deepening' is intended as the showpiece of Sardes and also provides space for the auxiliary branch of national curriculum expertise centre SLO.
An eye-catching stretch of carpet connects the various working areas and the meeting centre with each other and also accentuates the powerful visual axes in the building. The fresh, subdued materialization of the workplaces is interrupted by the expressive carpet. The meeting places are situated directly on this stretch and give a personal touch to the interior with their colourful interior objects. The carpet is accompanied by a number of half-height walls and closed spaces, which provide the consultation rooms with the required privacy and/or screening. The education and advice-related quotations, which are prominently on display along the traffic route, allow the Sardes identity to be experienced everywhere on the level.