IBI Group-Designed Capital One Headquarters Attracts Top Tech Talent by Banking on Cool
– Interior Design Concept Inspires Five Unique Workspaces on Five Floors –
TORONTO, ON (March 14, 2019) – Global design firm, IBI Group, has completed the interior design of Capital One’s new Canadian head office, located in the heart of Toronto’s financial district. Challenged to develop a design concept that would support the fintech firm’s collaborative culture, (including a desire for the untethered use of technology) as well as attract top, young tech talent, IBI’s unique ideas for each of the office’s floors, located in Brookfield Place on Bay Street, delivered the winning “In-spiration” for the progressive client.
The design concept was born from a challenge the IBI team faced with the existing office building. With a series of underutilized service spaces in the middle of each floor, visibility and access throughout the office was being impeded. The design team’s first instinct was to use the unusable. Inspired by the NYC (and future Toronto) High Line, the design team turned this challenge into the solution by giving these central corridors new life and transforming them into five unique destination spaces, creating a vital connected link between the east and west sides of the office. Bringing back the public realm into these spaces helped fulfill a number of design goals, from creating a dynamic wayfinding motif throughout the space, to allowing for the adoption of multi-functional “scrum” areas throughout the office – fostering collaboration and the flexible use of space.
“We took underutilized space in the office and made it the focal point of our design. Representing introspective and inspiring spaces that encourage creativity and contemplative thought, the five unique corridor design concepts are tied together through names that nod to the word “In” (In-stinct, In-line, In-time, In-focus and In-sight). A refuge for staff from the traditional workplace, these spaces bring elements of the outside “in”. We could not have fulfilled this bold concept without a forward-thinking and supportive client, which we were very fortunate to have,” said Barry Nathan, IBI Group Practice Lead, Interior Design.
With the corridors serving as impromptu collision and gathering spaces, more formalized collaboration hubs were created on each floor to accommodate Capital One’s need for flexibility of work space. These hubs are open concept with seven-foot-high freestanding walls. Each hub is designed in a unique colour scheme and features a custom steel-top table with built-in storage and technology. There is also a lounge area with a stunning view of the city, offering a feeling of open space and tranquility for inspiring creativity. Additionally, amenity hubs on each floor include a technology lounge, café and banquette seating areas that unfold in a dynamic sequence of connected, geometric cubes.
When visitors and staff step off the elevator at reception, their sensory experience includes leather paneling with steel frames and mirrored black ceilings. Leaving the traditional, corporate-feel of Brookfield Place behind, they are immersed in a space that feels more like a trendy, boutique hotel. A stacked plywood wall anchors the lobby area, featuring a giant, CNC-cut Capital One logo and a floating bench for waiting guests. Adding to the lobby’s dramatic features, black glass walls allow the logo to be reflected back to visitors, amplifying the brand’s presence throughout the space.
The lobby opens into a flexible meeting/training/event conference centre, partitioned by an acoustical glass wall and configured from one to three rooms depending on the event by vertical, stacking Skyfold walls. Designed for internal and external guests, the conference space provides an extension of the lobby’s hospitality lounge-vibe, complete with a spacious amenity area for informal gathering and refreshments.
IBI Group provided interior design services, working with JLL as Project Manager, Govan Brown as Construction Manager, and Eventscape on all custom fabrication. IBI Group’s corporate interior design team has also designed office space for Apple and Samsung in the technology sector, as well as BMO, Mackenzie Investments and Aviso Wealth in the financial services sector.
For more information or to speak with an IBI Group professional, please contact Julia Harper at email@example.com or 647-330-4706.