Wright & Wright Architects have started on site at The British Academy
to transform its staff areas at the Grade I listed home at 10-11 Carlton House Terrace in London. The refurbishment on the second and third floors will accommodate staff growth, enhance the overall working environment and address the need to provide more flexible ways of working following the Covid-19 pandemic.
Following a feasibility study that was carried out by the practice in Autumn 2019, the project received Listed Building Consent in June 2020. Wright & Wrights redesign respects the Listed building by retaining and restoring historic features while introducing small-scale contemporary interventions to improve connectivity between staff departments. Addressing the need for growing staff numbers and the option to provide greater flexibility for future expansion, the refurbishment will see an increase in workstations by almost 25%, meeting space will double, and staff social and informal spaces will grow by 231%.
A new centralised staff social and informal working space is intended to improve staff welfare and encourage collaboration amongst staff. Working closely with furniture consultancy Collaborate, furniture has been carefully considered to meet the evolving working requirements of a growing workforce. The redesign also sees the introduction of new IT infrastructure and improvements to legibility and wayfinding.
Stephen Smith, Partner at Wright & Wright Architects said Our remodelling project at the British Academy, will transform ways of working within the wonderful Grade 1 listed setting. The Covid-19 pandemic has brought into sharp focus the need to carefully consider the means for clients to appreciate space, light, natural ventilation and to allow for new collaborative ways of working both in their workplaces and remotely.
Graeme Appleby, Director of Resources at The British Academy said: The Academy is incredibly fortunate to call 10-11 Carlton House our home and it is a pleasure to work in such a beautiful and historic setting. That said, it has been a challenge to provide a work environment that enables collaboration, flexibility and growth while preserving and enhancing the building's historical features. Wright & Wright have not only risen to that challenge, with a thoughtful and elegant design, they have also thought carefully about how to provide spaces that will enable socially distanced working for as long as that will be required.
The construction phase commenced in August 2020 and is expected to complete in October 2020.