A new design by Vancouver-based architectural practice Leckie Studio gives the Slack headquarters a chance to rethink typical corporate communication styles, designboom reports. The company says humane thinking and empathy are its core social values, and the office design reflects those principles.
For one, there are no private offices within the open floorplan here. Typical meeting rooms exist, but so do mobile meeting boxes, which are custom-designed portable cubes on wheels intended to be used for ad-hoc informal meeting space. Employees seeking privacy for Skype meetings and phone calls can use “Skype booths”–updated phone booths sans graffiti and grit.
The space was designed to span three levels. Connecting them is a linked series of gathering areas of different shapes and sizes designed to support a range of activities. A double-height space with terraced seating accommodates “all-hands” meetings and presentations; the fact that it connects all three floors makes it perfect for informal gatherings.
A kitchen/espresso bar/cocktail bar zone on the third floor hosts team lunches and cocktail gatherings. There are also coffee stations, an open dining space and a first-floor lounge/media room.
The architectural implant that contains these spaces was challenging on structural and building code fronts. It required several innovative alternative solutions to make the space carry through several separate fire compartments across the three floors.
Aesthetically, Leckie Studio sought to integrate the building’s existing exposed structural brick, heavy timber beams, and mechanical infrastructure with contemporary, everyday utilitarian materials. The office’s overall decor makes an unmissable reference to the local climate, with a skylit moss-covered wall.
Elements like the interior glazing partitions and door assemblies were custom-fabricated from industrial hot-rolled steel components as were custom furnishings like the reception desk and kitchen shelving, which created a handmade aesthetic.
All these efforts were also designed to complement the building’s industrial envelope with industrial metal interior systems and furnishings. This is evident in the details that make the office a standout space, from custom sculptural lighting pendants that float, cloud-like, above, to the massive moss wall that makes nature an interior element all the way to the the quirky mismatched wood buttons on the upholstery.
All images courtesy of Leckie Studio