Spectrum Building Offices Photos, Gordon Murray + Alan Dunlop Architects, KSLD Lighting Design Award

Spectrum Glasgow Building

Offices at 55 Blythswood St, Glasgow, Scotland, design by gm+ad architects

28 Mar 2013

KSLD’s Spectrum House wins Workplace Lighting in Lighting Design Awards 2013

Design: gm+ad architects

Spectrum House in Glasgow has won the Workplace Lighting category of the 2013 Lighting Design Awards. KSLD were the specialist lighting designers, working with Michael Laird Architects on the refurbishment project to improve the visibility and appeal of this commercial rental building.

Spectrum Building
photograph from KSLD

Spectrum Building

The aim was to create an uplifting lighting scheme which updated the interior and strengthened the on-street presence of the building. The concept throughout was minimal, linear, clean and bright. The most eye-catching element is the array of LED light boxes at the facade which, activated by subtle animations, create a bold yet sophisticated statement at street level.

Spectrum Building Spectrum House Glasgow Spectrum House Glasgow
photographs from KSLD

KSLD’s Claire Hope said “The subtle animated ripple of the light boxes really makes this building stand out from it’s neighbours in a very understated way. It adds a touch of flair which should draw the attention of prospective tenants. We’re really pleased with the result, which meets these objectives and has dramatically added to the night-time identity of this building.”

Kevan Shaw, Design Director at KSLD, said “We’re very proud that Spectrum House has received this Award. The judges remarked on the detailing and integration of the lighting. This is only possible working with an architect, in this case Tim Griffin from Michael Laird Architects who trusts the lighting designer and responds to their ideas and advice.”

Spectrum House Glasgow Spectrum House Glasgow Spectrum House Glasgow
photographs from KSLD

Spectrum House – Further Information

KSLD are an independent lighting design consultancy and have no affiliations or ties with any lighting manufacturers.

– Spectrum House is a speculative office building in central Glasgow. Built in the 1960s, it has been refurbished previously but needed upgrading to appeal to prospective tenants. KSLD’s scope covered the entrance lobby, stair and lift lobbies, plus the introduction of exterior feature lighting.

– Project architect: Michael Laird Architects, 5 Forres Street, Edinburgh EH3 6DE

– Light boxes manufactured by Mike Stoane Lighting Ltd, 20 Dryden Road, Bilston Glen Industrial Estate, Loanhead, Midlothian EH20 9LZ

Spectrum House – Workplace Lighting category of the 2013 Lighting Design Awards information from KSLD

Spectrum Building Glasgow Offices

Dates built: 1999-2000

Design: gm+ad Architects

Spectrum Building Gordon Murray Alan Dunlop Spectrum Building

Photos by Andrew Lee

Spectrum House, 55 Blythswood Street

Refurbishment and extension of a 1960’s office block in central Glasgow.

Nicknamed ‘Turkey in Bacofoil’ (architects’ favourite) and ‘Kit-kat’ the building’s key feature has to be the shiny Bright Annealed marine grade stainless steel (grade reference is 316 (1.4404)) cladding. The south front is a clean slice of glass curtain walling, but the East end becomes more sculptural. The building bows out and up, with random miniature windows to the north façade.

The Spectrum interior is a clean renovation and pales into insignificance compared to the imaginative exterior: this building uses modest means to maximum effect and some architects may think this is all foil wrapping and no substance.

The shimmering sea of shiny silver sits atop a solid base of reflective black granite. This solid datum and the regular division of the facade help control the dynamic and random contortions of the cladding. The inflections and subtle modifications are for me more appealing than the wildness of say Gehry’s Bilbao Guggenheim. Above all this is an amusing building, an uplifting beacon in a dour part of Glasgow.

Spectrum Building images / information from Gordon Murray + Alan Dunlop Architects (gm+ad architects)

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