Herkules Maschinenfabrik

The use of light as a building element, defining space and animating form, is central to this design project.

Three identical lightwells articulate the scheme, transforming what was once a dreary, non-descript common room into an atmospheric, versatile space used not only now as a canteen but also as gallery  for a variety of social functions including design and award presentations.

The prefabrication of the lightwells ensured that just one working day was needed to replace the old roof with the new structure, incorporating not only the light wells, but also a concealed air conditioning unit. Fresh air enters the space via an elegant linear channel inscribed into the ceiling; warm stale air is extracted via a series of small vents evenly spaced around the top edge of each light-well.

The lighting theme continues in the entrance hall, with a stainless steel canopy set within the glazed frontage. During the day, the reflectivity of the canopy animates the ambient light conditions. At night, its underside is bathed in the company’s corporate blue, courtesy of the LED lighting recessed in the floor plinth.