FlightHub offices: Technology, Travel and Tribes

FlightHub offices: Technology, Travel and Tribes

Architect
acdf architecture
Location
Montreal, QC, Canada | View Map
Category
Offices
Stories By
acdf architecture

Bendheim
Maxime Brouillet

FlightHub offices: Technology, Travel and Tribes

acdf architecture as Architects

ACDF Architecture, a firm renowned for its ambitious, design-savvy commercial, residential, hospitality, and institutional projects, is proud to unveil the dynamic new offices of FlightHub, an online travel agency serving over 5 million airline passengers per year. The project comprises 12,800 s.f. of office space encompassing the building’s entire 6th floor, and marks an expansion of operations within FlightHub’s Montreal headquarters.

 

In approaching ACDF, the client was seeking a clever intervention that would infuse the essence of the company into the standard office floorplate, thus providing a unique identity that would embrace the company’s core business lines. Based on three key elements established by FlightHub - Technology, Travel, and Tribes - ACDF endeavored to create a layout and to deliver materiality reflective of both the digital world and the interstitial space of travel.

 

Distinction by design
At the heart of the project, an inner common space concentrated around the elevator core includes a reception area, a main kitchen, a small conference room, and a lounge area. Functional millwork emerges from the central core, providing a visual aesthetic of floating particles throughout. Curtains provide flexibility to the common area, offering the opportunity to subdivide the open space into private zones that can be used for meetings or smaller events.

 

“The design includes common areas at its core, with distinct ‘tribal’ zones beyond those spaces where teams can retreat to their different lines of business,” explains Joan Renaud, a partner, architect, and core member of the ACDF design team. “The layout provides a functional balance of flow and concentration that is conducive to the FlightHub culture.”

 

A modern flow
The use of contrasts forms an integral part of the firm’s conceptual approach to both external architecture and interior design. In reconciling the octagonal form of the existing space, the firm applied a fresh design concept to create a dynamic flow of space and time that would stimulate movement and promote social interaction. Using contrasts in lighting, colour, and texture, they endeavored to create emotionally-balanced moods to ensure that each individual space would be conducive to the client’s operational aspirations.

 

Concentrated along the outer perimeter of the common areas, the services core is wrapped in light-weight aluminum foam that serves as both an acoustic buffer and a nod to the aerospace industry. Using subtle transitions in materials and tones, the design delineates different zones through colour and serves as a wayfinding reference system that corresponds to specific programs within the company’s operations. Each tribal zone is independent from the others, each equipped with its own storage space, print room, kitchenette, phone booth, and conference room.

 

In creating zones that are insulated from one another, ACDF was faced with the challenge of extending the concept of ‘flow’ to the supply of natural light. In response, the innovative design incorporated channel glass to serve as a barrier between the common and private zones, with an alluring solar finish that enables natural light to filter from the exterior to the interior core. The doubled channel glass also creates an acoustic and visual buffer between the lively, colourful ambiance of the open spaces and the tribal work zones.

 

A new reality
Completed in April 2020, the FlightHub project was designed ahead of any indications of pending social distancing. Nevertheless, ACDF’s modern, flowing design infuses efficient features into the layout that help ease the challenges of creating a post-COVID office environment. In addition to partial distancing offered by FlightHub’s tribal concept, the flow of ADCF’s design ensures that there are always two ways to reach your destination. Each tribal area is also accessed through two separate doors, which helps reduce congestion. Tribal zones are also equipped with dedicated kitchens and conference rooms, allowing for further isolation of the company’s multiple workgroups during challenging times. Additionally, ACDF’s fresh and residential inclusion of curtains in the common zone serves to modulate the open space by enabling easy partitioning as circumstances dictate.

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Bendheim’s Lamberts® Channel Glass Separates & Connects Spaces at New FlightHub Office

Bendheim as Manufacturers

Renowned through facade projects such as the Nelson Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City, MO and South Street Seaport Pier 17 in NYC, channel glass is making inroads into interior design for the post-COVID world. At FlightHub, the glass creates a perfectly circular interior wall, separating the private offices located along the periphery of the octagonal building from the collaborative spaces in the center. It divides the space and allows the necessary separation to facilitate concentrated work, while creating a sense of openness, connectivity, and diffused light unachievable through conventional partition walls. The naturally hygienic glass surfaces are easily cleaned and sanitized.

The textured Solar channel glass surfaces diffuse light and obscure views, maintaining daylight advantages while providing a high level of visual and acoustic privacy. According to the architects, the glass “has a magical effect when natural light pours through.”

Our Lamberts channel glass is a uniquely budget-friendly solution for curved walls – the relatively narrow, segmented glass channels turn curves with ease, requiring only the frames to be custom-curved. In comparison, custom-curving glass lites can be challenging and expensive.

Acoustic privacy is enhanced by the double-glazed wall design. 4.5”-thick double-glazed channel glass walls have an STC rating of 38, comparable to the STC rating of a standard 4.5”-thick opaque interior wall with fiberglass insulation. Partition walls with STC rating of 35 or higher make speech unintelligible through the wall.

Project Credits
Manufacturers
Products used in this project
Product Spec Sheet

ElementBrandProduct name
ManufacturersBendheim
ManufacturersCymat Technologies
Alusion™
Product Spec Sheet
Manufacturers
Alusion™ by Cymat Technologies
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