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Speeding up communication
9/7/2012

The rapid pace of technological advancement also drives the working world. In fact, thanks to mobile communication devices, no-one has to physically be in the office any longer at all; they just need to be contactable 24/7. Nowadays, it is very rarely the case that all employees are in the office at the same time, so people are no longer bound to their own desks. If you’re in the office you simply take your laptop to a free spot.

This development requires a rethink in office design: quiet areas, meeting lounges as well as open areas for chance meetings and quick exchanges of information. In order to examine these new requirements more closely, students at Campus 02 Fachhochschule der Wirtschaft (University of Applied Sciences) in Graz fitted the foyer and balcony at Campus 02 with the “Parcs” range by furniture manufacturer Bene, putting the various elements to the test as tools for work and communication.

Created by British designers Luke Pearson and Tom Lloyd, “Parcs” comprises “Causeway” seating modules, used to create sofas with backrests that vary in height and can also be used to hold laptops etc.; “Wing Series” armchairs with high backrests and a sheltered headrest; “Club Chairs”, lower seats for conference rooms; “Toguna”, partially open, round meeting islands where users can either stand or sit; and the “Idea Wall”, a wall element with an integrated flat-screen display, which delivers messages to employees or serves as a visual aid during meetings.

The designers were inspired by urban landscapes, where it is the areas between the “usable zones” that shape a city’s appearance – its parks, for example. These provide the setting for a wide range of activities: people meet here, chat, relax, play or even picnic. PearsonLloyd have taken this informality and diversity and channeled it into their designs for the “Parcs” range. Conclusion: The students at the Graz university found that the “Parcs” furniture modules did indeed promote and speed up communication among students.

Subject of a research project: “Wing Series” armchairs from the “Parcs” range by Bene in the foyer of the Campus 02 Fachhochschule der Wirtschaft in Graz, photo © Werner Huthmacher
Subject of a research project: “Wing Series” armchairs from the “Parcs” range by Bene in the foyer of the Campus 02 Fachhochschule der Wirtschaft in Graz, photo © Werner Huthmacher
The “Parcs” furniture range, designed by British designers Luke Pearson and Tom Lloyd, offers several options for working and communicating within the office space, photo © Werner Huthmacher
The “Parcs” range also includes the “Idea Wall”, a freestanding wall element with a flat-screen display, and “Causeway”, seating modules with back and armrests that vary in height, photo © Werner Huthmacher
View of the foyer at the Graz university’s Campus 02, photo © Werner Huthmacher
Retreat for telephone calls: a single-person “Toguna” phone booth, photo © Werner Huthmacher
Campus02 was designed for the Fachhochschule der Wirtschaft in Graz by architect Guido Strohecker, photo © Werner Huthmacher
Quiet zones and meeting islands in the Campus 02 foyer, photo © Werner Huthmacher
“Causeway” in combination with “Club Chairs” by Bene, photo © Werner Huthmacher
“Toguna” is a round, half-open meeting island where users can either sit or stand, photo © Werner Huthmacher
“Club Chairs” from the “Parcs” series, photo © Werner Huthmacher

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