• Our client, a global advertising/ marketing powerhouse, planned to move from a standard office tower into 55,000 sf in a loft-style, turn of the 20th century converted warehouse with historical roots as a light bulb factory
  • The move was a transformational event, from a private office dominated culture (90 private offices) to an energetic open plan environment (only 15 private offices) that would encourage teamwork, collaboration and a sense of corporate community all housed in a unique, creatively-designed space.


  • Leverage the architectural opportunities of the warehouse
  • Establish the scale of a global Agency
  • Incorporate the historical roots of the building
  • Provide design interest to drive creative thinking
  • Create an inspiring open plan space with a range of creative collaboration spaces
  • Provide a consistent, aesthetic vocabulary to unify the design solution


I – Leverage the architectural opportunities of the warehouse and establish global scale:

  • Multiple small suites were demolished to create a large, open space with high ceilings, wide corridors and strong perspectives, establishing a sense of scale within the space
  • Three dominant principal axes were established to anchor the design solution and provide a dimensional energy to the space:

i) Reception to Market Square, ii) Market Square to Creative Department, and iii) vertically in the Mezzanine / staircase complex transitioning two and a half floors

  • Substantial pivot doors to Boardroom, spacious Boardroom complete the global scale theme

II – Historical roots referenced via oversized light bulb at entry (“ideas flourish here”), creative lighting fixtures (e.g., Matchstick Chandelier by Mezzanine breakouts), and layering of multiple lighting elements throughout

III – Inspiration and design interest provided via:

  • Interplay of major longitudinal and vertical axes driving all movement through the space and establishing a dimensionality to the design solution
  • Contrasting textures in similar palette of a range of design elements: weathered wood in Reception, leather sofa, cold rolled steel elements in Reception desk, Coffee Bar counter and porthole door, aluminum Navy chairs and tables, Imago space screens in Creative workspace
  • Dramatic staircase with interplay between muscular structural elements and lyrical folded steel treads
  • Multiple creative spaces to collaborate with co-workers — open breakouts with serpentine sofas, Mezzanine areas, Market Square

IV – Consistent design solution:

  • Palette of grey and silver tones is found throughout the new space
  • Grey blue color of building structural beams, the custom designed power poles, staircase and workstation elements
  • Relationship between the Column-based design of the building, structural elements of Knoll Antenna workstation design


The design has created a strong brand statement: from the oversized light bulb at entry (with Agency’s name as the filament), travelling past flat screen displays of the Agency’s creative work to the surprise discovery of the Market Square and substantial Boardroom, with views down through Creative Department — a strong and unique first impression that conveys the presence of a substantial Agency.  Clients ‘get’ it – a creative Agency in creative space.


Project Type


219 Dufferin St, #302C, Toronto, M6K 3J1, Canada

Related links


  • Bartlett & Associates
  • Bartlett & Associates
  • Structure Corp.
  • MCM
  • Mulvey+Banani
  • TMP