UAU Office

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  • Location: Hasselt, Belgium
  • Program: Office
  • Area: 1.020 m²
  • Year: 2019
  • Status: Realized

With a special predilection for the modernist style and the search for a suitable space for the home base of UAU collectiv in Hasselt’s city center, the three volumes in concrete at Kunstlaan caught the eye.

The office buildings just outside the center of Hasselt were built in the 1970s in a structure of concrete beams and columns filled in with non-load-bearing wall elements. This constructive principle gives the buildings a sleek, sober, and balanced appearance. In 2019, the balanced architectural concept lends itself perfectly to furnishing an office in accordance with contemporary standards.

The characteristic construction method has been rediscovered and the design is also based on honesty in the use of materials. The open plan form with an abundance of daylighting gave rise to a simple concept. The centrally located circulation center is the location where most consultation takes place and the further one distances oneself from this, the more tranquility there is. The landscape offices are therefore located at the head of the plateau. The space in between can be used for various consultations. Under the concrete beam structure, the placement of open racks divides the large middle zone into a consultation zone and a circulation zone.

The central kitchenette close to the circulation core is the ideal meeting place for a quick consultation. In addition to a meeting room, printing room, and materials library, a consultation box has also been installed near the circulation zone. This is very popular among employees, especially for internal consultation.

The modernist character of the building is further respected by the sober use of materials. The space under the window openings is suitable for storing samples and files but also serves as a bench. The separate furniture of the open-plan offices is sober and practical, while furniture with a story was sought for the consultation areas. The tables with leather tops and glass discs as a base in the middle zone found their first home in a Dutch library. The chairs were also stocked up in Brussels antique shops and contributed to the character of the desk.

The divisibility of the central zone is ensured by the acoustic curtains, which also create a warm feeling due to the fresh green color. The pleasant greenery returns in the natural stone elements of the kitchenette and bathroom, complemented by details in gold.

In addition to a new environment, the UAU collectiv team has also adopted a new working method since the move, in which targeted focus work is planned twice a day. The individual lights on the desks indicate when this UAU focus arrives. The rules of the game are simple and aimed at performing concentration work without interfering. Consultation is meticulously scheduled in the agendas and this is at the right meeting places.