The client’s brief was to remodel a tired early 1980’s office building to create modern efficient office floor plates generating a contemporary corporate headquarters facility. Following options analysis the most economically advantageous solution was deemed to consist of the demolition of the existing sub-optimal office space replacing it with a new larger structure which meets the brief requirements of the client and the needs of Grade A tenants.
The vision for the design, was to provide a high quality architecturally designed office building, that meets modern workplace expectations, while being responsive to its location on Frascati Road. The new Zurich House will be a building to transform Frascati Road and be a home for a recognised international tenant. The development will ensure the tenant will have a premises which is at the forefront of modern office design and will cater for their growing space requirements. There are a number of different underpinning aspects to the overall design concept for the new Zurich house. The building will be one building with two distinct forms to address the meeting point of two different distinct conditions, this will also be echoed in the buildings material selection. The building will integrate and screen the building services in an open air plant area that is integral to the façade. The building will address the currently unsatisfactory relationship that exists with the public realm creating a landscape zone between the building and the public realm. This landscaping treatment will screen the lower level car park and lock the building into its context. There will be a legibility of the scale to the building along Frascati Road, it will complement the other office buildings to the south in terms of profile and stature. Close up the detail of the building will be realised with the articulation of the veil like brise soleil and the steps to the upper ground floor reception becoming the focal point of the façade. The brise soleil becomes a strong architectural feature of a modern façade fronting Frascati Road. It is shown with rhythm and function as it acts in unison with the building energy performance.