The Interbank Tower is one of the symbols of Lima and of modern Peru. Designed by Pritzker Prize winner Hans Hollein and completed in 2001, this building embodies the principles of the Austrian architect, namely his desire to move beyond the crisis of rationalist architecture through a language that is contemporaneously an expression of the culture of a place while also being avant-garde and almost dreamlike.
Twenty years later, the New York-based architects of WORKac were tasked with redesigning the ground floor plus the common and exterior spaces of the tower, with the aim of bringing the bank’s headquarters into the new millennium. The environment at the time featured extremely formal interiors and spatial compositions based on strict hierarchical ideas traditional of the 20th century.
The reorganization of the company towards a more youthful and informal style led to the need for spaces that reflected these updated attitudes. The project of WORKac introduces new elements and opportunities for in-person and virtual collaboration between employees while maintaining the language and architectural ideals of Hollein. Despite being planned before the pandemic, the project anticipated some of the emerging needs of companies in a
The renovation enhances the bank’s headquarters with a multitude of flexible workspaces that can accommodate a variety of activities. Conceived as a collection of different environments within larger spaces, the architects sought to create rooms within other rooms, giving the spaces both reciprocal communication and privacy. The project includes meeting rooms, meeting booths, a small grandstand for internal presentations, an exhibition space, a café open to the public, an auditorium, and a greenhouse outside. Typical of WORKac’s architectural language, the project is characterized by playfulness, lightness, soft shapes and bright colors. Every room is a single design object, positioned within a larger environment based on precise compositional criteria. The areas open to the public, such as the café and the exhibition space, are at the north side of the building, whereas the employee spaces, including the meeting rooms, the presentation space, and the booths for one-on-ones, are on the eastern side.
The cylindrical seating of the grandstand, the desks in the lounge area and the walls of the meeting rooms and booths are all composed of wood, creating sinuous and subdued forms. Glass enclosures give the spaces the necessary privacy while also maintaining visual continuity and the impression of the architectural scale sought by Hollein in his original work.
One of the key design elements of the project is the greenhouse. A trapezoidal glass structure extending along the profile of the building, it houses a large variety of plants and offers the opportunity to work in a hybrid space between indoors and outdoors.
WORKac’s renovation has revived one of the symbols of Lima, introducing new, avant-garde spaces that create truly flexible and mobile work environments.
Location: Lima, Peru
Client: Intercorp Group
Gross Floor Area: 5,574 m2
Architect and Interior Designer: WORKac
Principal Architects: Amale Andraos, Dan Wood
Local Architect: Shell Arquitectos
Lighting: Tillotson Design Associates
MEP: JG Ingenieros
Photography: Ramiro del Carpio, courtesy of WORKac
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