At the new Multichoice building in Randburg, open plan office space is organised around a light-filled atrium. Along the atrium ‘street’ at ground level and overlooking this central volume, there are various pause areas and breakaway zones, casual clusters of seating and futuristic meeting pods where staff and visitors can interact. Bridges and stairs criss-cross the atrium at different angles and levels connecting the various departments. This planning approach creates a dynamic interior and provides for flexible ways of working, increasing the range of places where informal interactions, spontaneous conversations and a creative exchange of ideas can occur.
The building is fully equipped with advanced information, telecommunications and media technologies supporting 24/7 global connectivity and it provides a host of amenities for staff, including a gym on the fourth floor and a coffee shop which spills out into the atrium at ground level.
In the entrance lobby the ‘larger-than-life’ representation of the Multichoice logo forms a bold blue backdrop to reception and two purpose-designed pendant lights present a conceptual interpretation of the satellite dish associated with the broadcast brand. Photograph by Grant Difford Photography, courtesy of GLH Architects.
While lighting was a significant consideration in the interior design, it was specified selectively to complement the high level of natural light in and around the atrium space. Mood lighting was introduced with selected wall fittings and the use of recessed troughs where focused task lighting was not required. Elsewhere, lighting installations were guided by specific needs and budget limitations.
In the open plan office space and in meeting rooms, lighting specifications were driven by the need to meet required lux levels while recessed troughs allow for additional mood lighting in public areas. In pause areas more playful, eclectic fittings such as pendants were installed. In the business lounge Herzog & de Meuron wall fittings were used, introducing a quirky yet practical element as they can be manipulated by anyone using the space to suit individual light levels required.
Throughout the building the lamps used are primarily LEDs, to provide for power saving and longevity.
At reception the blue wall – a three-dimensional ‘larger-than-life’ representation of the Multichoice logo, reaching from ground level to the height of the fourth floor – is particularly well-lit so that it can be seen from the street. Two feature pendants, designed by dsgn design and based conceptually on an interpretation of the satellite dish, present a unique expression of the Multichoice identity in the entrance area. The new building is designed to serve the company well into the future.