Hayball Architecture Studio Fitout
Project NameArchitectural Studio Fitout by Hayball Architects and Bettina Steffens
Photographer DetailsBrett Boardman
Hayball Studio’s approach to refitting their own architecture office in Sydney’s Surry Hills was inspired by contemporary learning environments. The adaptability, natural light, and open plan of modern work and educational spaces has proven successful in stimulating dynamic workplaces.
An essential part of achieving the desired office fit out for the studio was to co-create with staff. Pooling ideas to actively support the wellbeing and stimulation of staff members was of critical importance. A key element that was common to all staff members was using timber as the main material. Extensive research into the positive effects of timber in the workplace led to the decision to use it as the main material right from the conception.
Flexible programming enables all aspects of the studio- from analogue, digital and physical workspaces, to occur in an adaptable and innovative way.
Given the cavernous nature of a converted warehouse, the acoustic properties of the building needed to be addressed. Solid silver fir acoustic ceiling panels with wood insulation absorbers were specified for most areas of the space to treat sound travel. The booth seating areas in particular benefit from the high acoustic performance.
Finding a contrast to the raw industrial features of the open warehouse space was one of the main objectives for the aesthetic. Sandy beech plywood was used to line the walls of the space, offering a soft and calming offset to the steel framed warehouse. The health and wellbeing of staff was the main consideration in using a softer material like timber for the lining . A box within a box structure was built to house some of the meeting rooms, providing a cosy refuge within the larger volume of the space.
Custom joinery was created to differentiate the various specialist work zones, from private, to more open and collaborative areas. Raw timber, black metal detailing and tan leathers make up the palette of the joinery. Booth seating, a library area, meeting rooms, and a kitchen are all custom made from plywood and solid timber. Birch ply treated with melamine foil was used as the kitchen splashback, maintaining a consistency of materials. The distinct zones offer different acoustic properties to allow variations in atmosphere for staff. Sliding doors provide an easy solution to adapt the spaces depending on usage.
Engineered oak timber flooring has been used for the the built in meeting room spaces, offering a contrast to the polished terrazzo concrete which spreads through the rest of the warehouse space. Victorian ash hardwood was used for timber sliding doors and windows.