Projects: Exploring ‘the third space’

bishopsgate CROP

Three new London commercial schemes explore the ‘in-between’ areas that are neither home nor workplace, neither public nor private

In 1948 George Nelson, the American industrial designer and director of furniture brand Herman Miller, described the ideal office environment as a “daytime living room where work can be done under less tension with fewer distractions”. This vision of a blurring of boundaries between living, work and leisure space was prescient: in today’s networked world we can – and do – work from anywhere. And as working patterns change and businesses come to rely on a shifting and contingent workforce, there is increasing demand from both workers and employers for flexible space, and a desire for businesses to reach out beyond their walls to gather ideas and inspiration.

Meanwhile, as technology pervades every aspect of daily life, conventional businesses are competing with global tech companies over the same highly skilled, digitally aware staff, while concerns over mental health and wellness are rocketing up the political agenda. Against this backdrop, the need to provide an attractive working environment is becoming more pressing – especially in a country like the UK, which is dominated by its services sector, in which people are the most crucial ingredient for success.  

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