The modernization of the interior of Santander Data Center in Wrocław was aimed at obtaining a comfortable, functional and user-friendly workspace, which would be both well organized and aesthetically coherent. Sabina Dziadosz, responsible for its concept, proposed combining the traditional open space with spaces adapted to work in the agile methodology, as well as separating creative work zones, AdHoc meeting places and relaxation zones, improving the comfort of work.
The Santander Data Center building was built in the 1990s. The facility combines technical and office functions – one wing houses servers and their technical facilities, the other – offices. After almost three decades of operation, it required modernization and adaptation to modern standards of comfortable work spaces. According to the designer, it was a challenge due to the need to maintain the structure of the building – quite compact and space-limiting. That is why all design procedures focused on the visual enlargement, opening up and lighting of office spaces. The first step in this direction was the removal of the low, suspended ceilings. The exposed concrete ceiling turned out to be so well-preserved and visually attractive that a decision was made to abandon the previously planned painting. “The modernization of existing facilities is of a completely different nature than the construction of new ones. In the process, it is often discovered that the condition of the building requires changing previous assumptions, applying other solutions. Some changes entail others”. This was the case with Data Center ceilings – raw concrete looked interesting, but did not provide adequate acoustic comfort. Therefore, numerous acoustic panels were hung above the office open spaces: white in the work zones, covered with botanical prints in the meeting and relaxation zones.
WELCOME TO OUR OFFICE
One of the most visible changes was the rearrangement of the entrance hall. The existing technical room was reduced, the reception area was enlarged, and an additional gate for employees entering and leaving the building was added. The removal of the conference room located in this place allowed to open up the space and create a comfortable waiting room. All this makes this space more friendly, and this impression is strengthened by colorful accents, vivid green plants in the waiting area, a warm shade of wood-like cladding on the walls and the reception desk.
In order to visually organize the space, each floor in the office area has its dominant color, which appears mainly on the floor coverings. The colors of the entire interior are bright and optimistic, and the vivid tones present in the accents as well as the potted flowers and botanical prints on acoustic panels create a friendly atmosphere.
A specific part of the office is the Cyber Security special unit. Responsible for the security of the bank’s software systems, it occupies a separate open space with additional access control. Here, the organization of office space has been adapted to the specificity of the unit’s work: the arrangement of clover-shaped desks facilitates teamwork and observation of monitors placed on the wall, while also ensuring work ergonomics – each workstation has two computer monitors. Due to long working hours (12-hour shifts), the Cyber Security department is equipped with high-class Mirra2 office chairs and desks with electrically adjustable height.
MORE SPACE FOR RELAXATION
In the remaining office area there are workstations (Maro Nowy Styl desks and chairs) arranged in classic “six-packs.” They are accompanied by wardrobes with built-in flowerbeds, Buzzi Space acoustic partitions and glass screens that can be used as memo boards. Two conference rooms (one with a TV) can be used as meeting places – soundproofed with acoustic coffered ceilings and double-glazed walls. In addition, the open space has a separate relaxation zone: chilloutroom and cafe point (where Swing Bejot stools were used, among others). Employees also have a mini-cloakroom in a built-in wardrobe at their disposal. To improve the comfort of telephone conversations, a VANK two-person telephone booth has been installed, which can also be used as an ad hoc mini-meeting room.
In the right wing of the building there is a large, closed kitchen for dining. There are also two conference rooms: one has a mobile wall that allows division into two smaller rooms.
The left wing houses more meeting rooms: one larger and more traditional, the other for informal meetings. In addition, the chilloutroom in the corner of the building can also be used for ad hoc meetings if necessary – and Bejot’s Social Swing will ensure that the atmosphere will not be too stiff. In the left wing there is also an agile meeting room – AdHoc Cube. This room is shaped like a cube and the special paint allows you to write your ideas with markers right on the walls. In the left wing there is also a zone containing mobile hot desks and another three VANK telephone booths.
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