With SoftBank Energy’s New Delhi office, architect Vivek Gupta and his team at Arvind Vivek & Associates set out on a design expedition that proves that minimalist offices in their apparent simplicity can also exhibit a complex programme.
Rarely does one think of a workplace as a sanctuary. But when it is one inspired by the Japanese concept of shibumi, there is bound to be aura of tranquillity about it. Shibumi is a kind of aesthetic that is simple yet complex. For architect Vivek Gupta, principal of Arvind Vivek & Associates, who has explored other Japanese themes in past projects, this was an apt response to SoftBank Energy’s requirement for a new office space. He was approached by the client to design a barrier-free workspace at a new location — a perfectly blank canvas that was ideal for this zen design exploration.
An initial inspection of the site yielded a favourable impression. “We liked the location, which is Aerocity in New Delhi, a commercial hub adjacent to the international airport, comprising office spaces and several hotels. The second thing that appealed to us was the unused terrace space that has (now) become the centre of attraction for this office,” says Vivek. The site was rectangular, it had the building’s utility and service routes on one side and an elongated terrace on the other. Keeping in mind the concept, the linearity of the space was ideal to create a simple, open layout that didn’t demand theatrics in its form or aesthetics.
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