Industrial design transforms former tool maker's factory into creative HQ

The Hickman building is a fresh new take on trendy, collaborative office design. As a workplace concept, The Hickman is an award-winning office that’s smart and sustainable.

Project partners

  • Banyard Consulting - Services Consultant
  • Project & Building Consultancy Ltd - Project Manager
  • Rider Levett Bucknall - Principle designer

Key features

  • Exposed concrete ceilings
  • Natural light
  • Variety of workspace
  • Preloved furniture

Project description

GPE's goal with Hickman was to ensure its workspaces, communal areas and amenities were all designed for creativity and authentic collaboration. As a gathering place for multiple tenants, adaptability was also an important part of the brief. With an on-site café, spacious courtyard and park views right in the heart of Whitechapel, landlord, GPE has focused on a flexible model which means incoming tenants will find their perfect fit within the building regardless of size or budget.

When design meets history

The Hickman takes its name and character from its former life as home to an artisan tool maker, Hickman & Buck. Our design incorporates industrial styling as a nod to the history of the building by layering concrete, steel and exposed mechanical and electrical services. This bold ‘look and feel’ is combined with preloved furniture and inviting sofas, artwork, plants, warm lighting and touches of timber to soften its industrial edges.

Tool up

The office’s floor plan was designed in two halves with a central teapoint, lounge and informal working areas as a focal point in the middle combined with traditional workspaces and tech-enabled meeting rooms.

Open plan areas are furnished with sit-stand desks and storage, as well as plug-and-play booths for individual work and touchdown spaces for collaboration. Furniture pieces come directly from GPE’s own collection, allowing tenants to scale up or down and reconfigure as needed.

Made in Whitechapel

It’s fitting that Whitechapel - a recognisably diverse, trendy and cultural part of London - is home to such a unique building. Now complete with a fresh and flexible design, The Hickman is set to become an iconic workspace.

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