The Business in March

News and pictures from the design sector

Nulty illuminates Ab Rogers’ Battersea Archlight Cinema

Lighting design consultancy Nulty has illuminated Archlight, a new boutique cinema at Battersea Power Station’s Circus West Village development in London. Located in a series of railway arches, Ab Rogers Design has created a cocooned underworld of cosy spaces, with heavily textured ceilings of angled acoustic panels. The lighting works in conjunction with these complex and layered ceilings, positioning downlights to create ‘catch and miss’ moments. Illuminated panel ceilings deliver lighting ‘scenes’ for guests’ arrival in the screening room before dimming to low-level lighting. The all-LED scheme works across the interconnected arches, through three cinema screens and a ticket office.

Vicoustic turns plastic into acoustic paneling
Acoustic solutions company Vicoustic has announced it has turned 250 US tons (226,796kg) of plastic waste – the equivalent of more than 22 million 500ml PET bottles – into acoustic panels. It has achieved this by swapping products that are foam-based for those using a raw material called VicPET Wool, which is designed to use 65 per cent recycled plastic waste and does not add glue, fabric or chemical fire retardants. VicPET Wool meets EuroClass B fire regulations, is a low-emitting VOC material, and is certified by the OEKO-TEX 100 Standard, which tests textiles for harmful substances.

Milliken meets energy management standard

Carpet tile designer and manufacturer Milliken has achieved ISO 500001:2018 Energy Management Systems requirements for two of its UK manufacturing sites, which serve markets in Europe, the Middle East, India and Africa. The standard requires a company’s management framework to be developed to use energy more efficiently, aiming to reduce energy use, energy costs and greenhouse gas emissions. Milliken plant manager James O’Brien commented: ‘Receiving this standard validates Milliken’s genuine and tangible commitment to saving the world’s resources at a time when this has never been more critical.’ |

ACME starts construction on Folkestone Seafront

Architects ACME has announced the start of construction on its Folkestone Seafront development – the first new buildings along the waterfront in a generation. The overall project for Folkestone Harbour and Seafront Development Company comprises a new beach boardwalk, completed in 2017, the refurbishment of the Harbour Station and Customs House, as well as a ‘highline’ walk over the old Harbour Viaduct; the new masterplan continues work on the historic harbour and station, creating public space with sea views. The residential development takes the form of a crescent of townhouses, inspired by Victorian seaside estates, with two taller volumes at each end. The crescent houses also feature curved bay windows and balconies, and there is a raised communal garden on the wind-shaded side.

Fritz Hansen opens first London Showroom

Fritz Hansen, the Danish furniture brand founded in 1872, has opened its first UK stand-alone showroom in London’s Clerkenwell. Across two floors, the showroom’s curated interiors and wide range of products on display – from furniture to accessories – offers a holistic introduction to Fritz Hansen and its take on a modern Nordic lifestyle.

Within the industrial setting of the building the interiors use a colour palette of rich browns, burgundy, deep green and muted pastels, complemented with large artworks and plants. These interiors form a welcoming setting for visitors to view Fritz Hansen’s newest collections. These include launches of classic Arne Jacobsen chairs such as the Series 7 in velvet, the Ant chair in new spring colours, and Ant Deco (the first printed editions of the Ant chair, with a new design by Danish designer Krista Rosenkilde); the Planner series of tables, accessories and shelving; and Nendo’s N02 Recycle chair made from household plastic waste, on show for the first time in the UK. Jaime Hayon’s new Fred Lounger is on display in multiple finishes, showcasing the Fritz Hansen Christianshavn textile collections too, while Fritz Hansen’s expanded range of accessories add all the finishing touches to a vision of the Fritz Hansen universe.

Worldwide, the company has 2,000 points of sale in 85 locations, with flagship stores in Copenhagen, San Francisco, Milan and Tokyo. With the new London showroom, Fritz Hansen reports that it is ‘excited to get closer to both existing and potential partners’.

The Crafts Council Gallery reopens after transformation into a ‘home for craft’

The Crafts Council’s 19th century former chapel in London has been transformed into a multi-use ‘home for craft’ with space for exhibitions, events and study for makers and visitors. AOC Architecture was appointed for the design, having previously designed London’s Wellcome Collection reading room. In the new gallery is a desk and study area designed and made by Sebastian Cox, rattan benches by Soane Britain, and lighting by TM Lighting. The outside courtyard has also been redesigned to be open and accessible. The inaugural exhibition upon reopening on 28 March is Maker’s Eye, which will be the largest ever display of the Crafts Council’s objects. |

The Light Lab manages multi-team project for Bobby Moore Bridge

A bespoke SPI-controlled lighting project has been completed as part of the refurbishment of the Bobby Moore Bridge pedestrian underpass next to Wembley Park station in London.

The client was property developer Quintain, and The Light Lab was responsible for management, fabrication and installation. The project concept came from Dixon Jones Architects and lighting design was by Speirs + Major, while the first artistic commission is by architectural design collective miriamandtom. Named ‘Crossover’, the light art is meant to reflect the local community who pass through the site daily. The underpass is also the first sight to meet a visitor to Wembley, and forms part of the route to Wembley Stadium.

For the walls of the underpass SPI individually controlled mutli-LED pixels sit behind acid-etched, toughened laminated glass with a sentry-glass interlayer – a robust surface to deal with the post-event crowds the underpass accommodates. A central section of the east wall features the renovated and illuminated tiled mural, created in 1993 in honour of Bobby Moore, the captain of the England national team that won the 1966 FIFA World Cup.

The ceiling Glowline (a bespoke product from The Light Lab) links the two walls and also uses SPI-controlled linear LEDs.

USM Haller chosen for fashion brand Billionaire Boys Club’s Parisian pop-up

Billionaire Boys Club (BBC), the fashion brand created by Pharrell Williams and Nigo, has chosen USM Haller furniture and fixings for its pop-up in the newly opened Galeries Lafayette in Paris. Following Bjarke Ingels’ 2019 reworking of the famous art deco building into a ‘laboratoire de commerce’, the BBC pop-up uses chrome USM Haller as shelving, hanging rails and a wall divider, complementing metal-clad walls and floor tiles printed with a photograph of the surface of the moon. USM Haller is pared back and unobstrusive in the space, and its modularity is well-suited for a pop-up as it can be reconfigured and re-used easily.  |

V&A Dundee reveals £75m economic impact

An independent study has found that the V&A Dundee made a £75m economic impact on Scotland in its first year after opening, including £21m in Dundee itself. This compares to a predicted impact of £23m and £10m respectively, after receiving visitor numbers of 833,015 compared with a predicted 500,000. Also affecting the economic impact is the higher proportion of overseas visitors making longer trips around Scotland. Other findings in the study by Ekosgen and Reference Economic Consultants include that the construction of Kengo Kuma’s lauded building for the V&A helped support 7,037 jobs and had a further economic impact of £70m across Scotland.

National Infrastructure Commission outlines Design Principles

The National Infrastructure Commission’s design group, chaired by professor Sadie Morgan OBE of dRMM, has announced its first ever Design Principles for National Infrastructure. It has four key considerations – climate, people, places and value – which it says should be embedded into all planning and delivery of projects for the construction or renewal of nationally significant infrastructure. The principles seek to help the UK achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 or sooner, create projects at a human scale, nurture a sense of community, and add value beyond the main purpose of the infrastructure. The announcement of the principles comes a month before the expected publication of the government’s own National Infrastructure Strategy.

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