Leading architecture and urban design studio, dhk, has unveiled its design for the head office of one of the largest banks in South Africa, Capitec Bank. The business currently operates from multiple buildings in scattered locations in Technopark, Stellenbosch (South Africa) and has therefore decided to consolidate its offices into one building in the same business park. The office is custom-designed and considers Capitec’s current occupancy and planned growth thus increasing operational efficiencies.
The new building will be situated on two vacant and adjacent plots of land on the North-West edge of Technopark and will accommodate up to 21 500 sqm of space. A number of key concepts have been considered, namely, the identity of the brand, internal flow and green initiatives – such as water saving, energy saving and air quality.
dhk has designed a single three-storey building with a wide open-plan floor plate that ‘loops’ around a central triple-volume atrium. The loop adopts a fluid curvilinear form that shifts along its length, capitalising on the property’s 360-degree views. The floor plates are connected across the atrium by a series of feature bridges and staircases to promote interactivity between departments. The façade of the building was developed to accentuate the linear looped form with a simple ribbon of fenestration that responds to the ever-changing orientation of the building.
Looking to the future and considering the dynamic nature of the business, the interior utilises best practices in modern workplace design. The building will enable a high level of interaction amongst business units whilst providing flexibility, adaptability and agility. In addition to workstations, the office will include a central canteen, coffee stations and a Capitec Bank branch. Director at dhk and lead architect on the project Peter Stokes says, “Capitec encouraged input from the architects and interior designers to incorporate the latest workplace trends. To future-proof the design of the building, a flexible and agile approach was taken. The flow within the building supports a high degree of interaction and collaboration between business units and the executives”.
According to Derick Henstra, executive chairman at dhk, “Capitec is one of the most progressive and exciting companies in South Africa. We are delighted to have been the architects chosen to design their new headquarters”.
Simple and sophisticated in its design with light open spaces, the building will facilitate departmental and executive interactivity and ultimately efficiency. Capitec’s head office is set to be completed in February 2020.