Professional office located in Griffintown

Desjardins Bherer Office

Completion date

2017

Project manager

Katherine Ste-Marie

Photos

Adrien Williams

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After having designed the interiors of the Brickfields, a mixed-use tower in Griffintown, Desjardins Bherer decided that the firm would move into the project. Although the space presented some challenges – views to buildings below, ventilation units to be hidden, poor acoustics and plumbing that was already installed –, it also gave the team an opportunity to apply their imagination and talent toward creating an enjoyable work and living environment.

Drawing on its polished style, Desjardins Bherer played with the light, hid the mechanical services and used clever juxtapositions of materials to create a space that has much in common with the projects it carries out for clients.

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Daylight complemented by task lighting

Upon entering, bands of windows flood the space with daylight and offer a comforting view to the treetops in the park across the street. The tone has been set. A bit further on, a full-height glazed wall reveals the inner courtyard, and a sliding glass door separates the conference room from the kitchen to make the most of the light. Task lighting is supplied to the work surfaces by very elegant indirect lighting fixtures and desk lamps.

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Clever concealment

Plumbing and sprinklers are housed in two bulkheads as well as in a central volume created specifically for the washroom, computer equipment and samples. Ventilation grills are tucked away in some shelving for reference books and prizes won by the firm. Pipes that could not be concealed have been painted white, like the ceiling and columns, to create a sense of height.

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Well-considered combinations

The Quebec granite in the kitchen works well with the torrefied ash table in the conference room. Wooden desks, which had yellowed over the years, have been recycled and dyed grey, a good fit with the floor’s polished concrete. Custom-designed visual and acoustic screens trap some of the sound reflected by the expansive glass and concrete surfaces.

The neutral palette, essential for preventing distractions during creative work, is skillfully blended with scattered touches of colour that add some “pop” and a lively touch to this reserved and efficient interior.

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Creation, know-how, exhibition

Desjardins Bherer wanted its new space to become a creative nexus for the team and a place where clients could learn about the firm’s know-how. It also wanted a decor that would suit its favoured products and where they could be appropriately presented.

In pursuit of this goal, the firm made some careful selections from among its usual suppliers: some favourite lighting fixtures, furniture built by local craftspeople, works of art and carpets. The wall separating the kitchen from the conference room features a carpet by Paola Lenti, a true collaborative work as the team helped develop the design and select the colours.

The time spent planning and designing this multipurpose space reflects the care given to all of Desjardins Bherer’s projects for clients. The spaces are contemporary, refined and functional.