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Washington H. Soul Pattinson

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Preserving legacy, celebrating culture

When Washington H. Soul Pattinson (WHSP) relocated from their iconic Pitt Street offices (a space they occupied for 116 years) moving to the new Barrack Place development, they didn’t leave their past behind. The new workplace embeds a rich heritage while evolving to promote performance and innovation. Our concept innovation builds from heritage, allowed us to draw on the clients strong heritage and history as a company and bringing that forward into the future. Their story is told through artefacts and spatial materiality but when blended with the new it shows where the company wants to be in the future. Working together to build a strong future.

The new workspace needed to reflect the way WHSP connect and collaborate. Preserving legacy and celebrating ‘family like’ culture was imperative. Our concept ‘Innovation builds from heritage’, allowed us to share stories through curated artefacts, while innovative spirit lives through people, inspired to build a strong future together.

The primary focus was retaining the old site’s heritage features, whilst developing a new innovative and inspiring workplace.

The beautiful clay bricks reference the old sites internal structures while maintaining contemporary design. At the core—the new workspace was reimagined to support a variety of working styles, converging into an open, residential inspired living environment for staff to eat, work, and play.

To compliment the curved ceiling, classic lighting was purposefully distributed as if being attached to a heritage site. Wall lamps and wash lights emphasize brick textures and subtle details, completing the look. At the heart, a multipurpose and interactive open space that extends through large windows and arched doorways. The use of glass blocks and sheer curtains allow sunlight to penetrate the core and the lush green atrium.

The texture and materiality of the brick tile, glass blocks, and versailles panels make a statement, custom joinery library bookcases, sophisticated furniture and artefacts add a personal and timeless touch to the space.

An incredibly complex task to lay brick on vertical, horizontal and curved surfaces while creating the perception that the brick building had been there for many years. One of our challenges was keeping the structure light so we could achieve the new building enveloping the old, creating stunning juxtaposition.

Outcome: The transformative workplace’s newly formed spaces act as a stage for past meets present. Contrasting effects injecting new life and activity into the workplace of the future.