Stirling prize winning architects Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios needed a new space in central London for their expanding practice. Along with the practical needs of a busy practice, FCBS wanted a more engaging street presence with views into the public and social spaces that embody their design approach.
Ben Adams Architects were appointed to bring fresh architectural thinking to the brief, and an external perspective to the overall design process.
The new studios are split into a ground floor showroom and social space, with the main design studio and meeting rooms at first floor. Floors are linked by a new pavilion at the rear of the building and accessed via an elegant top-lit staircase.
The ground floor provides a shop window for the work of the office, with views from the street into a hard working event, gallery and meeting space – a hub for the collaboration, research and discourse that underpin the practice’s ethos. A large open bar/kitchen with a simple palette of materials creates a practical, durable and stylish resource for hosting professional, industry and public events.
A central focal point is provided by the bespoke plywood stair which unfolds into this hub space to provide a display area for models, a ribbon-like bench and a reception desk. It is an informal yet intensely pragmatic gesture, conveying something of the practice’s values and approach.