Ceasing operation as a leisure facility in 2008, the Council had been looking for a buyer for the Albion Leisure Centre in Ilkeston as part of a bid to regenerate the town centre for some time. Due to continued growth local recycling and waste management specialists, Ward Recycling Ltd, acquired the building to further expand its Office capacity as well as Making best use of the Brownfield site.
The priority for the client was to create sustainable modern offices that would inspire staff, be flexible for expansion, supporting staff and their wellbeing. This was all to be delivered within a constrained budget and tight lead times due to other operational factors.
In order to deliver this ambitious refurbishment project our design team evaluated how existing features of the building could be retained and combined with contemporary systems, finishes and sustainable M&E services. Where possible brick was left exposed and some existing feature finishes remained to contrast with installation of new systems.
Converting the offering from a Leisure Centre to contemporary Offices posed a number of challenges ranging from reconfiguring space layouts and structure to upgrading of services. New external windows were introduced to increase daylight and natural ventilation whilst providing additional views to outside.
The interior design scheme was heavily influenced by the growing trend of Biophilia, connecting staff with the outdoors; having proven benefits of reduced absenteeism and staff wellbeing. Concrete effect floors, moss inspired carpets, rustic timber slat walls and a number of large stunning biophilic nature graphic walls were combined with the exposed brick to create a unique interior.