Al Jazeera Media Network (AJMN) has unveiled its new UK headquarters and broadcast studio in the iconic Shard skyscraper in London.
The scheme has created a pre-eminent broadcast production facility, incorporating innovative workspaces and offices with a multi-purpose newsroom and revolutionary studio, which breaks the mould of the ‘black box’ studio and re-imagines how broadcast facilities are designed.
Experts in their respective fields, Al Jazeera appointed John McAslan + Partners to design the reception and office area and Veech x Veech Architects to design the broadcast studio and adjacent newsroom.
The Al Jazeera Media Network’s Creative Division were vital to this collaboration, providing the brief for the scheme and being a collaborative partner throughout the design and construction process.
Housed in Europe’s tallest building, this new facility, creating major news and current affairs content across the global Al Jazeera network, reinforces AJMN’s position as a leading news organisation in the UK and European marketplace. The UK office now provides a vital communications role for AJMN, becoming the European hub linking the time overlap between the headquarters in Doha and the studios in the US.
John McAslan + Partners’ design for the office and reception includes a flexible work space, open-plan office layout, meeting rooms, break-out spaces, a kitchen and a caf`. The design clusters control rooms, edit suites, make-up and green rooms within a central area around the building’s core, defined by a sweeping semi-opaque backlit glazed wall. Conceptually, the sinuous glazing provides an organic foil to the fractured forms of The Shard’s base-build. The sweeping forms are echoed by the bespoke curved desks and furniture in the newsroom.
Fundamental to Al Jazeera was the creation of a contemporary and flexible office environment, easily adaptable to suit the client’s constantly evolving needs.
The scheme features a dramatic reception area which dispenses with the need for a receptionist, featuring back-lit glazed walls enlivened by an interactive media wall displaying Al Jazeera’s current programming.
As visitors walk around the office it provides a tour of how the news network works with each section linked to the next. Staff work in open-plan environments, a rare sight in broadcast facilities where workspace is typically segregated in rooms without direct daylight.
Published by Tribune News Network
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