Development Initiatives

Sector: Charity

Size: 5,027 sq ft

Location: The Quorum, Bristol

Time on site: 6 weeks

Type: Cat B


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The Vision

The Vision

Development Initiatives [DI] is a global organisation focused on putting data-driven decision-making at the heart of poverty eradication.

Based in Bristol, their expiring lease turned into a great opportunity to reassess their organisational needs. With an office that felt cramped and uninspiring, they looked for our help in moving to the recently refurbished Quorum and creating an accessible, welcoming and collaborative workspace, better suited to the flexible requirements of post-pandemic working.

As a charity, it was important from the onset we reused as many existing elements as possible to maximise the budget. This meant we focused on how we could enhance the space.

The Action

The Action

This design and build project was dedicated to creating the right atmosphere through visual and decorative works. The design process was collaborative with DI playing an active role in the process.

The brief revolved around creating a hub-like space that employees would be eager to return to.

A key focus of the space is the social side of the office; a large tea point and break out area. To amplify the relaxed, collaborative atmosphere we added a central island to easily gather round, complete with booth seating. To promote a sense of togetherness we needed to create an inviting community space.

DI’s new workplace needed to provide a mix of collaboration and work stations to suit any given task, giving employees the freedom over how they work while they’re in the office. DI have a neurodiverse team, and it was important to ensure every member of staff had a place to feel comfortable, secure and productive.

Throughout the office we have reused existing furniture and combined it with interior styling to help bridge the gap between home and the office. Soft touches make the space feel homely yet vibrant, using a mix of natural materials, textures and an earthy colour palette.

DI had some sentimental artwork like tapestries they’ve been gifted over the years; these were incorporated as focal points in the wider design.
Stepping away from traditional white walls, there are subtle yet striking features like Bauwerk limewash paint in the reception and breakout spaces which closely aligns and compliments their branding.

Finally, to acknowledge their global presence with roots in Africa and an offices in London and Washington, there are clocks throughout the space that help keep everyone from different time zones in sync.

The Result

The Result

After 6 week on site, the project was delivered swiftly and without complications.

Arriving at DI, you are greeted with an inviting and welcoming reception space; Bauwerk limewash wall, plush velvet chairs with soft throws, a striking backlit branded sign and an incredible piece of African tapestry.

This people-centric business now has a fantastic tea point and breakout space which is the focal point of the space; offering a place to relax, eat, and socialise. The open plan tea point is complete with an array of refreshments and an Vi instant water dispensing tap.

Across from here is a multi-functional space for people to come together.

In the main workspace there are multiple places to work and collaborate; at a desk, at the central high bench, in an enclosed booth, or together at the centrepiece Ocee FourReal collaboration table surrounded by biophilia.

Other flexible areas include the addition of two new meeting rooms. The larger boardroom is ideal for company meetings and training with the potential to double up as a yoga studio. Both are finished with DI manifestation.

The space feels homely and inviting, enticing people back to the office and providing an incredible alternative to working from home.

Key Design Features

  • Earthy colour palette to complement existing art collection
  • Installation of island in tea point
  • Vi instant water dispensing tap
  • Plenty of soft touches to promote feeling of home from home
  • Bauwerk limewash paint, a natural eco-friendly paint
  • Mix of collaboration points
  • Plenty of biophilia through natural light and greenery