The Arçelik Prototyping Center was designed as a base that would provide opportunity for open innovation, draw in campus employees and become an interactive space for the mutual use of engineers, makers and technicians.
The needs of the Çayırova Campus employees and the product development phases that they undertake were analysed by interviews and polls, which formulated the data that was used throughout the design process. The project was realized by repurposing part of an old storage; in fact based on the information received from employees, the project has evolved into a structure with a mid-floor section that functions as an exhibition space and extends into open spaces through a layered transparency.
The Prototyping Center’s spatial language was defined by the differentiation and cohesion between spaces reserved for primary activities, meeting, producing and designing, and their physical manifestation.
The client was searching answers to why the spaces of production, 3D printing technologies and other equipment remained insufficient and did not respond to the changing needs of the employees. Following the surveys and interviews conducted with engineers and technicians working at the Çayırova Campus, the focus was on designing a more comprehensive solution series that would respond to the inadequacy of physical space as well as auditory, sensory and image pollution problems such as noise, dust, and the inconveniences caused by trucks.
As well as optimizing the comfort level of the outdoor area, the team also aimed to address the needs of users to socialize on campus, interact with each other, and to utilize personal workspaces. The production is visible and central in the building; it was aimed to transform the working culture more by sharing, explaining and making it possible to participate in the process by chance. The main road was shifted to solve the problems caused by the outside environment, while trees and gradual green areas formed the transition between the building and the road.
During the competition which 8 firms participated in, the ATÖLYE team didn’t solely focus on how to meet spatial needs but also on the existing situation and possible interventions while evaluating the different scenarios on how the building might be operated and integrated into the rest of the campus. ATÖLYE presented its project to the engineers and the project team that were present during the process by using the best examples out of all the local and global examples it had looked into.
System design, venue design, interference on a masterplan scale, corporate identity and venue graphics were completed. Meetings with advisors regarding acoustic, lighting, landscape, mechanic and electrical systems were held to bring unique solutions to the existing situation.
Every step of the Design Thinking Process emphasized the circulation of empathy, definition, design, prototyping and testing in the building as these were the qualities most obvious in the design process. Different colors were used for each function, making sure that the circulation of the processes were made visible and understandable for visitors.
One half of an existing storage house was turned from a dark space into an advantage by creating multi-purpose, transformative, acoustically isolated private spaces.The aim was to create a place with an open area that the 350 employees in the Çukurova Campus, along with the continuous users of the building can make use out of, operating on a similar basis to “makerspace”.
The building, which was designed as an open space, was intentionally placed in the heart of the building, next to the terrace and the communal lounge. This way the space which shall house simple and improvised inventions will surround the other defined areas. The goal is to have this interference increase the interaction between different units and pave the way for new projects.