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April

Agile work space recognised in top industry awards

Network Rail’s revolutionary new offices in Birmingham have been shortlisted in several prestigious award schemes including the BCO’s and RICS.

The bespoke office fit-out designed by WW+P and delivered by Overbury has transformed three floors of grade II listed Baskerville House, one of Birmingham’s most prominent and historic buildings in Centenary Square. The work place consists of 84,000 square feet and brings together staff from a number of disparate offices throughout the city – to enable better collaboration, maximise productivity and promote well-being.

A multi-faceted organisation, Network Rail is undergoing a major cultural shift in order to become a more responsive, efficient and effective organisation; this is the flagship and one of several new agile office spaces around the UK which are instrumental in effecting this change.

The staff at Baskerville House include a number of different teams, with a range of working methods; the challenge in bringing them together was to balance flexible working practices with the requirements of specialist teams.

The design concept of ‘activity settings’ enables staff to choose an environment appropriate to the task in hand: an informal alcove sofa, bookable meeting rooms, in a private acoustic booth, in the Deli bar, in a dedicated training/seminar suite, at any number of break out areas, or simply at a desk. This range of settings seeks to address the shortcomings of the pure ‘open-plan’ office, providing space for concentration and collaboration.

A spokesman for Network Rail said: “We are really pleased with what’s been delivered. Baskerville House is a magnificent building and ideal for our agile-working requirements.”

Philip Breese, Senior Partner at WW+P said: “Collaborating with the variety of Network Rail specialist teams and blending their requirements into a coherent agile workspace fit for the future has proved a fantastic opportunity to put our ideas about the workplace into practice.”