Showcasing the creation of a new life for an oldbuilding, Landini Associates brief was to restorethe former Collingwood industrial warehouse into the new headquarters base for T2.The aim was to respect and celebrate theoriginal building, while creating a dramaticstatement to represent the T2 company’sethos. Throughout the building, timber beams,columns and brick walls were sandblasted tobring back their original fi nish whilst a fewscuffs and marks are kept as a remembranceof its history. This was contrasted with T2’strademark dark, streamlined pallet.
Perceived constraints were turned into an advantage, exploiting various levelswithin the warehouse while designing a unifi ed space. This was due to the sitebeing located on a sloped block through to the rear street. This resulted increating a different arrival experiences for both the public and staff.With the street frontage lower than the general entry, the public is ushered intothe space through an oversized steel framed pivot door into a double heightspace. Led by concrete steps, guests are greeted by a spotlighted oversized T2logo featured in incandescent light bulbs. To the left of the entrance is a TeaBar, a façade reception. It is an informal place to stop, drink and chat to guests,personifying T2’s identity. This space also acts as the trial concept for T2’s latesttea-retailing concept T2B, which similarly features a large cast concrete bar andTea Library.
In comparison, the staff entry is from the upper level rear car park, from wherethey walk down onto a lavish catwalk in the center of the offi ce warehouse.This acts as both a uniting feature and the site’s backbone, yet separates thespace into two. Both sides of the railings feature different faces. One, a cleanline façade featuring a sleek black steel panel that hides the catwalk, while theother featuring a warm and raw industrial fi nish, with a timber panel, exposedsteel and mesh steel frame balustrade.While the rawness and industrial experience is continued upstairs to the teamaking and tasting workshop and CEO’s offi ce, a completely different colourpalette is entertained. It emphasizes a white, clean space, encouraging lightand nature to transfi x the room through the opened windows.The development marks a new era for T2, providing and innovative andfunctional offi ce space that refl ects a deep understanding of culture, urbanity,and of course, celebrates the centuries-old art of tea-making.