a collaborative team that includes AL_A, HASSELL, and PLP architecture has completed ‘sky central’, a flagship workplace for the british media company. the new building is located at the heart of sky’s 13 hectare headquarters in osterley, west london. the facility houses 3,500 employees and has been designed to promote flexibility, openness, and ease of access, encouraging the flow of both people and ideas.

amanda-levete-al_a-sky-central-offices-london-hassell-designboom-02
image © hufton + crow / courtesy of AL_A
(main image © hufton + crow / courtesy of arup, HASSELL, mace, PLP & sky)

 

 

the design team behind ‘sky central’ includes: AL_A, responsible for the building concept and planning consent; interior and executive architect PLP architecture; workplace designers HASSELL; contractor mace; and engineering firm arup. with a floor area totaling 37,000 square meters, the building contains a wide range of on-site amenities. the scheme includes the UK’s first completely cashless supermarket, six dining venues, and a 200-seat 4K cinema.

amanda-levete-al_a-sky-central-offices-london-hassell-designboom-13
the building is located at the heart of sky’s 13 hectare headquarters in west london
image © mark cocksedge / courtesy of HASSELL

 

 

in 2011, AL_A were asked to create a strategic vision for the campus and a masterplan for the entire headquarters. ‘sky central’, the centerpiece of the site, is a vast low-rise and wide-span building, formed around large naturally-lit overlapping voids within deep floorplates that create high levels of visual connectivity. the project seeks to bring the corporate and creative sides of the business under a single roof.

amanda-levete-al_a-sky-central-offices-london-hassell-designboom-02
the facility houses more than 3,500 employees
image © hufton + crow / courtesy of arup, HASSELL, mace, PLP & sky

 

 

a series of open and flexible spaces have been designed in clusters of ‘neighborhoods’, where the traditional distinctions between creative, technical, production and corporate have been broken down. these neighborhoods are supported by ‘home zones’ — arrival spaces that include small kitchens, meeting tables, and casual sitting areas, bringing an intimate, human scale to the vast space.

amanda-levete-al_a-sky-central-offices-london-hassell-designboom-02
the scheme has been designed to promote flexibility, openness, and ease of access
image © hufton + crow / courtesy of arup, HASSELL, mace, PLP & sky

 

 

the three-storey building features a large triple-height central atrium above a 100-meter long thoroughfare that runs the entire width of the ground floor. the roof, characterized by a grid of skylights, is designed to maximize natural illumination. this reduces the need for façade glazing and the reliance on artificial lighting. externally, the building is clad with anodized aluminum.

amanda-levete-al_a-sky-central-offices-london-hassell-designboom-02
with a floor area totaling 37,000 square meters, the building contains a wide range of on-site amenities
image © hufton + crow / courtesy of arup, HASSELL, mace, PLP & sky

amanda-levete-al_a-sky-central-offices-london-hassell-designboom-02
the scheme includes six dining venues and a 200-seat 4K cinema
image © hufton + crow / courtesy of arup, HASSELL, mace, PLP & sky

amanda-levete-al_a-sky-central-offices-london-hassell-designboom-02
the project is formed around large naturally-lit overlapping voids within deep floorplates
image © hufton + crow / courtesy of arup, HASSELL, mace, PLP & sky

amanda-levete-al_a-sky-central-offices-london-hassell-designboom-02
the scheme seeks to bring the corporate and creative sides of the business under a single roof
image © hufton + crow / courtesy of arup, HASSELL, mace, PLP & sky

amanda-levete-al_a-sky-central-offices-london-hassell-designboom-14
intimate areas of seating promote group discussion
image © mark cocksedge / courtesy of HASSELL

amanda-levete-al_a-sky-central-offices-london-hassell-designboom-02
a series of open and flexible spaces have been designed in clusters of ‘neighborhoods’
image © hufton + crow / courtesy of arup, HASSELL, mace, PLP & sky

amanda-levete-al_a-sky-central-offices-london-hassell-designboom-02
transparent offices remain visible externally
image © hufton + crow / courtesy of arup, HASSELL, mace, PLP & sky

amanda-levete-al_a-sky-central-offices-london-hassell-designboom-02
the three-storey building features a large triple-height atrium
image © hufton + crow / courtesy of arup, HASSELL, mace, PLP & sky

amanda-levete-al_a-sky-central-offices-london-hassell-designboom-02
externally, the building is clad with anodized aluminum
image © hufton + crow / courtesy of AL_A

 

 

project info:

 

client: sky
completion: 2016
concept architect: AL_A
interior and executive architect: PLP
workplace design: HASSELL
main contractor: mace
planning consultant: DP9
quantity surveyor: aecom
approved inspector: butler and young
health & safety/CDM co-ordinator: lend lease
visualizations (to RIBA stage D): dscribe CGI
visualizations (from RIBA stage E): cityscape
BIM co-odinator: fulcro
sustainability (from RBA stage E): KLH
civil engineering, structural engineering, geotechnical engineering, fire engineering, acoustics, security, logistics, sustainability, daylighting, accessible environments, lighting, transport (to RIBA stage D): arup
landscape architects (to RIBA stage D): capita
program and procurement consultant (to RIBA stage D): RPM

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