IIDA Italy International Design Award

Italy International Design Award 2024

Urban Sky Oasis: Backyard at 12 Office Community

Urban Sky Oasis: Backyard at 12 Office Community
Winner of 2022 SILVER Prize

Design of Office Space


"Backyard at ", as an office community that integrates nature and ecology, is an innovative platform that promotes green technology. The design team considers "Green Mission", "Innovation" and "Playful" as its three main concepts, which intend to reintroduce nature into the gradually homogeneous urban office life. Ultimately, it creates a sky oasis and provides a kind of environmental-friendly and sustainable new office experience amid the modern skyscrapers located at Suzhou CBD.
Site Challenges:
This project is on the 12th floor of a modern office building located in the CBD area of Jinji Lake, Suzhou Industrial Park. With a limited budget, the client hopes to retain the original office space as much as possible. However, the interior is characterized by a relatively chaotic circulation, low correlation between materials and finishes, poor integrity, and fuzzy divisions of space and functions. Therefore, the design team attempts to demonstrate the brand spirit of “Backyardat” through partial renovation and innovative public space design.
Design Strategy:
Regarding the partial renovation, the design team aims to activate the entire space through the point-to-surface design method. Meanwhile, meeting the needs of the client's desire which is to create an office + social space with the theme of "nature, freedom, and self-growth".
The creation of an “Urban Jungle” atmosphere starts from the sub-entrance of the elevator lobby. The “Jungle” serves as the first impression of the space, combined with the wooden deck, path, and seats breaking the stereotyped layout of traditional office space "reception upon entry". In addition, the partition wall of the main entrance uses translucent polycarbonate panels, creating an entering intention with visible indistinctly open public space.
Entering the public zone, the green undulating grass slope stretches along the glass curtain wall, forming an interesting contrast with the high-rise buildings outside the window. In the meantime, to extend the atmosphere of outdoor recreation, the retro dining car, the rope net tent-like sunken communication area, the bar hut-like reception, and the leisure booth seats are added to the public space. These elements, on the one hand, divide the space; on the other hand, create a circulation that is dynamic, varied and flexible.

Spatial Detail Design
In order to emphasize the core of the public area, the design removes parts of the original walls and ceiling, and uses concrete paint to create an understated but alive background for the space theme "green". Considering the post-maintenance and user experience, the common interior green wall is innovatively designed as a grass slope, fulfilling the diversified scenarios such as lying, sitting, resting, chatting, overlooking the city and using in conjunction with the surrounding space. While reserving potholes for potted planting, the steel frame structure is formed an irregular slope shape. Then, the artificial turf is covered on top to create a scenery of trees growing naturally on the hummock.
Social Significance:
Backyard at 12 Office Community explores a new type of office design that breaks the boundaries of the office cubicles and beyond the stereotyped kind. Enabling working in a comfortable and flowing space amid the feeling of natural green, Backyard at 12 is designed to mitigate the sense of tension and restraint brought about by standard office space. Thereby, it encourages mutual communication and collaboration, and stimulates creativities.

Design by WEN STUDIO x NeosSpace

Founded in 2013 in Shanghai, NeosSpace provides end-to-end EPC (Engineering Procurement Construction) solutions, from design conception to construction. We believe that design is a holistic system that begins with observation and insights and ends with high-quality manufacturing and collaboration. Our team is empowered to truly grasp the needs of clients, understand the nature of projects, and respond effectively to challenges, all to reach the end of goal of delivering humanized spaces with identity to our clients around the world.

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