The new TechnipFMC office takes us to the world of water stories. It influences emotions and imagination in such a way, that it is really hard to give up thinking about this unique place. How was it possible to create such a space on the four floors of the Krakow office building, that reflects the ambience of the underwater depth and sea associated with the TechnipFMC profession? This is what we ask the authors of the interior design, The Design Group and the TechnipFMC project team.
Krakow - development Eldorado
Recently, the capital of Małopolska has been called a development Eldorado. And it is not only about residential buildings popping up like mushrooms, but also about modern office space. A new place of this type on the map of Krakow is the Podium Park complex, commissioned in 2020, which has BREEAM certificates at the highest possible level - Outstanding. It is undoubtedly one of the most modern and ecological office building projects in Poland. It is the complex of three interconnected 11-storey buildings with a total leasable area of over 50 thousand. sq.m. It is in one of the towers of Podium Park that the four floors of TechnipFMC office are located.
Underwater and on the surface
The main design idea of the office is closely related to the activities of TechnipFMC. It is a concern with global reach, providing technological solutions for the energy industry, specializing in innovative solutions of oil and natural gas extraction. It works in both offshore, onshore and above-water projects.
The client expected that the appearance of the new office should, on the one hand, refer to the architecture of other headquarters of the concern, and on the other hand, stand out from the rest.
- Bearing in mind this client's need, we decided that the design office would refer to what TechnipFMC does, i.e. designing machinery for oil and gas extraction from the seabed. Therefore, we have designated four levels: the first floor is the underwater space, the second is the water level, the third and fourth floors are decks of watercrafts used in marine operations. Our client liked our concept very much - explains arch. Konrad Krusiewicz, founder of The Design Group.
- TechnipFMC is a world leader in energy projects, technologies, systems and services, in addition, we provide our clients with deep expertise in subsea and surface projects. We are the leader of change and we believe in innovations - explain Agnieszka Radomska-Przedlacka and Dariusz Włodarczyk from the client's project team. - The new office in Podium Park, apart from ergonomic aspects and a new space for employees, contains many details that refer to our installations, tools, materials and the way engineers work. We would call it such "flavors" that are noticed by our employees from Krakow, but also from global projects located in different parts of the world, where TechnipFMC operates – they add.
Technically and roughly
The main task of The Design Group architects, in line with the client's assumptions, was to show the elements characteristic for TechnipFMC's activities. It is technically and rough here - such space was required by the client who wanted to create a place that not only tells a lot about the company itself, but also favors the strict minds of the engineers working here. The most prominent feature is recreating the climate of TechnipFMC floating equipment – we have here uncovered installations and cabling, industrial lamps, trusses, containers and yellow technical barriers. There is also piping running along the internal facade of the building in the void zone, from the second to the fourth floor. Another interesting solution is covering the walls with painted trapezoidal metal sheet, or spreading expanded metal on the ceilings. In the space of the Krakow office, there is also a real recycled container door.
The TechnipFMC office in Krakow has several unique solutions created especially by architects from The Design Group. Among them it is definitely worth mentioning the so-called void, i.e. a free space integrating floors 2, 3 and 4 and connected by glazing with floor 1. This original TDG idea allows you to look from the first floor to the other levels of the office, almost as we can observe the world while under water. The void zone is also a symbolic integration of all teams working on each floor, where open spaces, collabs and rooms are located. In the previous location, this connection was impossible, so the client was very anxious to ensure that all employees in the new office had a sense of consolidation.
The first floor of the office, i.e. the underwater level, is a collab area designed for collaborative work. It was maintained in navy blue, and the sand-coloured carpeting refers to the seabed. The walls are finished with a special light diffusing structure - to give the most of the underwater nature of the world. The shape of the seats proposed by The Design Group (especially for this zone) resembles the underwater installations produced by TechnipFMC.
The second floor (water surface) has representative functions. This is where the reception desk and event space dedicated to, among others, town hall meetings are located.
- The event space consists of four conference rooms equipped with mobile walls that allow any arrangement of this place and a small warm up and cool down zone. According to research by Herman Miller, this division is useful for both personality types: extroverts and introverts. Depending on their predispositions, they can conduct small talks over coffee at a convenient time, e.g. just before or after a conference or training - says architect Marta Konarska from The Design Group, responsible for the concept of TechnipFMC.
In brand colors
The Design Group designers also had to face the challenge of including the TechnipFMC brand colors in the design of the office.
- On each floor of the office (except the first one) there is a kitchen and a coffee point with a different color of the ceiling - blue, red and purple. They refer to the brand colors of TechnipFMC - says Martyna Bosek, architect of The Design Group, who is part of the design team for the implementation of the TechnipFMC office.
Red, blue and purple, which dominate the company's logotype, have been supplemented with raw concrete resin. It can be found on the floor and walls in the reception and event area. The element warming the arrangement is a wood-like laminate used on the walls in offices. However, there are many more references to the characteristic TechnipFMC logo here. They are present in various details of the interior design of the office, which clearly reflect the unique dynamics of the triangle, e.g. in glazing under an angle or selected furniture.
The next levels of the office are characterized by different brand colors of the trapezoidal metal sheet, which is the core of each space. In offices, meeting rooms and work rooms, the ceiling is decorated with expanded metal modules painted black, under which installations and mineral wool also in the same color are attached. Therefore, closed offices meet the acoustic requirements. In addition, this solution is aesthetically interesting because there is an impression of space between the mesh and the ceiling.
The already mentioned unique arrangement solution located in the Void zone is an installation made of small glass balls, designed by Dariusz Włodarczyk in cooperation with Plus Lighting. It represents the so-called Subsea Tree, the company's flag product, which is deposited on the seabed, used to control the extraction of the raw material. This installation crosses the office floors and is clearly visible from the mezzanine of each floor and through the glass ceiling / floor between floors 1 and 2.
- We had the pleasure to participate in an extraordinary project, where we delivered several thousand balls made according to an individual pattern made of blown glass. For each of them, we have planned its place for nearly 1000 pieces of lines suspended from the previously prepared structure. Each line is topped with a brass ball for stiffness and perfect representation of the installation. The whole thing was illuminated with framing spotlights so that the light brings out the depth of this project - explains Michał Paduch from Plus Lighting.
Noteworthy are also solutions that reduce the negative impact on the environment, such as LED lighting, installation of filtering and water heating systems in taps, collective containers for waste segregation, high energy household appliances, increased number of plants or ecological hygiene measures.
Due to the size (approx. 65875sqft) and different space requirements of TechnipFMC employees, the project was very complex and demanding. The end result is an office tailored to the client's needs. It is the place where employees can enjoy suitable working conditions and inspire with its outstanding arrangement values.