A Commercial Design & Build Concept
The brief for this project was to design and build two soundproof telephone booths so staff could make calls without disturbing the rest of the office. As it is often the case when working in commercial properties, the real complexity was the co-ordination with the landlords and leaseholders, and in completing the work around the staff, without upsetting their everyday tasks.Scroll
The colour scheme
The client’s original brief was to create two booths with a ‘funky’ and ‘cheerful’ design. As a starting point, we took the green from the office floor tiles and matched it with complementary tones, maintaining a sense of continuity. As they were to be fitted in a basement with no natural light, we chose colours that would make the space feel bigger and brighter, both inside and out. The gradient of shade, going from black to ‘kiwi’ as the eye travels up, also makes the ceiling height appear higher, which is beneficial in an otherwise rather long and low room.
Soft neutral greys were chosen for the fitted benches and tables so as not to be too overpowering. The aluminium frames of the windows and doors were sprayed in RAL 7016, Anthracite Grey: the perfect foil to the bright greens of the structure.
Thank you so much for (…) all your teams hard work. The booths look absolutely brilliant (…) The benches look fabulous ! We love the colour and material.”
From conception to realisation
In our search for the best acoustic cladding, we came across an amazing acoustic foam that not only comes in a wide range of colours, but is designed to go round corners. This limits the number of joins needed and increases the acoustic quality, while being visually very pleasing: the foam wraps round the whole booth, like a cocoon.
Adapting the material for use on this fairly small scale project was at times challenging, but we worked closely with the supplier, as well as our carpenters and upholsterers to achieve a snug, precise finish.
Challenges & solutions
The simplicity of the structure is perhaps deceiving: these booths are very carefully and precisely designed, using cutting edge materials and technical details. We still had to deal with the same requirements of any work space: good ventilation and light, internet and power outlets, and comfortable seats and tables. We were also limited by the space available, which was framed by existing pipework and a fire exit. The final requirement was that, as it was a rented property, the booths had to be removable if and when the clients decided to move offices.
- Soundproof Texaa material
- Increased privacy, an important part of the brief
- Bespoke double glazed doors
- With increased acoustic quality
- Specific profiles
- Allow the fabric to be stretched properly. Specialist subcontractor Fabritrak helped complete the work to the highest standard
- Hand made to fit the space
- Phone lines and sockets
- Brought in
- Ventilation duct
- Extended to improve airflow
- Motion activated sensors
- Added to existing lights for ease of use and saving of power
- Existing lights
- Moved and adapted to fit
- Particular care taken
- To ensure floor and existing finishes not damaged during installation
The brief was quite unlike anything we had previously taken on. In the end this project incorporated so many different facets of the company, including research into materials and practices, considered design, precise joinery and workmanship on site, as well as sourcing other skills contractors – not to mention liaising with the client’s office team and landlords all in a very short space of time. Although quite challenging at times we are pleased to say that the project proceeded very smoothly and that we — and the client — are thrilled with the result.”
Building close relationships with suppliers
At Goodbody & Co. we believe in long-term relationships. Our work with trusted suppliers was particularly important on this project as everything was bespoke from the glass doors to the benches.
In our research for the best soundproofing material, we came across a company based near Bordeaux, called Texaa. Their high performance foam, Vibrasto, not only has incredible acoustic qualities, but has a very hard-wearing, anti-soiling coating in 22 colours, making it perfect for any variety of application.
We have worked with Urban & Grey on several projects – though none quite like this one! They supplied the glazed units, and offered help and advice on many aspects of the design.
The benches were hand built by the Goodbody & Co. team, and upholstered by Stevens Furniture Restoration. Matt Stevens, the founder, is one of our most trusted suppliers and we have worked with him many times over the past few years.
FabriTrak® is the original proven product for providing stretched fabric profile systems, offering versatile solutions to the designer and acoustic specifier.
It’s all in the detail
Stretching the fabric:
This gives it a smooth finish and improves the acoustic quality.
Creating a comfortable seating experience.
Rounded corners add a softer feel.
The colour palette:
Even the table leg was carefully chosen to complement the scheme.
Health & Safety:
Sensors and smoke alarms were installed. Despite the limited space, no detail could be left ignored.
Motion activated sensors were added to the booth lights creating independent and private units for the staff.