The winners of British Council for Offices Awards used ‘employee wellbeing and sustainability’ as "defining principles" with which to design their buildings, according to judges.
Seven office buildings across London were recognised as projects that "demonstrate best practice in office design, fit-out, operation and sustainability, setting the standard for excellence across the sector".
Winners of this year’s competition stood out for their "user-centred design credentials, as well as their creative implementation of wellbeing and sustainability measures", said judges.
A new prize awarded this year – the ESG Award – also recognised a workplace that will have “a game-changing influence on the environment, social value, governance for sustainable outcomes in the commercial building sector”.
The BCO Regional Award winners for London are:
- Henrietta House, Henrietta Place (Corporate Workplace)
- The Lantern, 75 Hampstead Road (Commercial Workplace)
- DIAGEO 1 HQ, 16 Great Marlborough St (Fit out Workplace)
- Getty Images London HQ, Duo Building, 280 Bishopsgate (Projects up to 1,500)
- The Kensington Building, 1 Wrights Lane (Refurbished/Recycled)
- Convene at 22 Bishopsgate (Innovation)
- Five Bank Street (ESG)
The Best Corporate Workplace award, which went to Henrietta House, was “a collaboration between landlord, long-term occupier and architect”. The building has been “carefully upgraded, reconfigured, and extended to create an open and dynamic HQ in line with CBRE’s user-centred workplace strategy”.
The judging panel said Henrietta House had capitalised on “a complex site and leasing constraints in order to provide spaces with excellent health and social credentials”. The building’s refurbishment and new infill include an employee wellbeing suite, outdoor amenity, library, six-storey open atria and a generous cafeteria to create a well-connected and bright campus-style workplace, designed to attract employees back into the office.
The Lantern received the award for Best Commercial Workplace. A BREEAM Excellent development with over 10,000 square feet of new retail space, the development was “unanimously acclaimed by the panel for its creative integration of mixed-use spaces”. The building also carefully reused elements of the original building, while delivering "a light-filled space with five terraces and a double height reception, as well as a gym and health centre to promote wellbeing and productivity".
Helen Hare, director of projects at GPE and regional judging chair for the BCO London Chapter, said: “The role of the office has continued to evolve since the pandemic, with the rise of hybrid working transforming how we think about the workplace as a space to come together. This year’s winners for London demonstrate the meaningful role that offices continue to play in society. The exemplary projects that the judging panel had the pleasure of visiting showcase the office’s potential to act as a hub of inspiration and creativity, while not only addressing new sustainability targets, but embedding them into the design of the buildings as guiding principles.”
Richard Kauntze, chief executive of the BCO, said: “This year’s winners for London highlight the importance of sustainability and social impact across the office sector. From Five Bank Street to The Kensington Building and Henrietta House, these projects offer impressive examples of how workplaces can create a sustainable work culture while placing employee wellbeing and community engagement at their heart.”