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04 May 2016 | Updated 01 January 1970

A major refurbishment of Vodafone's Bracknell offices has been completed by Area Sq and MESH Construction Consultancy.

The redevelopment of the ground and first floor of Waterside House in Bracknell is part of the latest in a series of projects that support Vodafone's Better Ways of Working initiative which aims to pioneer a flexible working regime.

Area Sq, the commercial interior design and fit-out specialist, worked with MESH, a cost management company, project management consultant Aecom and design consultancy Platform, to upgrade and refurbish the 70,000sq.ft building.

The works took place over the course of a year in a phased occupied manner. This required working closely with Vodafone's facilities and ambassadors teams as well as project manager Aecom to come up with a phased programme that did not interrupt day-to-day operations at Waterside House, working with the moves team to clear each area out, strip back to shell and refurbish. Major building works included installing a link bridge, new reception area and external landscaping works.

The building has been brought up to date with the installation of all new data cabling, communications rooms, new ceilings, lighting schemes, air conditioning and floor finishes. These changes were reportedly all carried out without disrupting the complicated data infrastructure within the building with fire alarms, security systems and power to the rest of the building, all kept running while the works were being completed.

New furniture supplied by Sketch has been installed, including soft seating for break out spaces, benches, chairs and tables for the canteen. The desking and workstation chairs were supplied by Sedus and the majority of soft seating by Orangebox. All furniture installations and phasing was managed by Sketch.

The redesigned offices at Waterside House are part of a current programme carried out by Area Sq and MESH for Vodafone offices around the country, including Thames House and Brook House in Bracknell and Smale House, London, all of which support Vodafone's Better Ways of Working initiative.


Away with hierarchical barriers

The mobile phone provider believes that by breaking down hierarchal barriers and removing fixed desks and personal offices, the programme ‘fundamentally challenges’ how people interact and collaborate by ensuring that no one has their own office but that all staff, including the leadership team and CEO, can take their laptops to work in any one of a number of workspaces.

To support this approach, the new open plan workspaces at Waterside House encourage communication, collaboration and planned serendipity, and comprise a range of collaboration zones, breakout spaces and ‘wellbeing’ areas, including a modern gym and a roof terrace which was installed to be used as both a working area and a communal space.

Picture: Vodaphone’s Bracknell offices has had a radical overhaul to encourage flexible working and an end to hierarchical barriers 


Article written by Cathryn Ellis | Published 04 May 2016


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