Investing in a more sustainable workplace

As a global business, Man Group is committed to acting responsibly and minimising its operational impact on the environment while at the same time ensuring their employees can be productive and achieve excellence in their work environment. Nowhere is this mission better reflected than in its London HQ which Overbury built with the circular economy in mind.

Project partners

  • Turner & Townsend
  • Perkins & Will
  • HDR

Key features

  • Sustainability
  • Value
  • Firepit
  • Music room
  • Workshop 'The Makers Space'
  • Collaboration space
  • Flexibility

Project description

Navigating complex conditions

Riverbank House landlord Man Group, required a 10-phase refurbishment: three and a half floors to be stripped back to Category A office space, two floors of strip out and refurbishment of Category B office space, one floor requiring a refresh as well as the new development of a new café space and reception area on the ground floor.

The project had to be completed while adhering to the changing government guidelines set during the Covid-19 pandemic, which meant that the building was populated at times, and delivered with a strong environmental focus.

We developed and erected a temporary scaffold tunnel in the reception, giving all occupants safe passage to the building during the works.

The project demanded a focus on sustainability and value, prioritising the reuse and refurbishment of materials wherever possible. To that end, we reviewed detailed validations and surveys with the design team to determine which elements could be incorporated into the design.

Maximum/minimum impact

Where possible, ceilings were kept as either original or refurbished. On one of the floors, meeting rooms were largely retained, and the wooden flooring was cleaned, buffed and polished to give it a new lease of life. If specific elements could not be restored or reused, we recycled as many materials as possible – for example, cuts of good quality carpet were donated to a local charity.

Our approach to the underfloor power system is an example of delivering maximum value for minimal cost – the team undertook a full validation survey of what worked and what didn’t while also reviewing the new design against the existing installation.

Thanks to this approach, the Overbury team was able to adapt and improve the original phasing plans to achieve significant time and cost savings. This included a full review of existing materials to maximise reuse during the refurbishment.

Building in versatility and variety

The project comprised several unique spaces across the eight floors, including a mothers’ room, multi-faith room, in-house electronics workshop (or ‘Maker Space’), a music room, coffee points, a campfire room, wellness suite, music room and a mixture of breakout rooms.

Overbury created multi-purpose areas, such as the Town Hall space with an adaptable folding wall so that occupants can split the room into two or expand depending on capacity. The addition of a removable auditorium stage and an AV control room has ensured a versatile space for professional in-house events when required.

The AV requirements were complex due to the number of AV-required rooms and the fact that Man Group has stringent corporate network requirements. This was managed by utilising an AV manager to ensure a fluid control process.

Fire and water: designing the elements

Man Group’s office included a dome-shaped 'Camp Fire' room complete with an indoor firepit, a bespoke curved sofa, curved walls and a curved ceiling. All materials in the room are flame resistant. Several dimmable lights have also been installed on the ceiling and behind the seating areas.

In the main reception area, each individual timber beam had to be measured, cut and mounted to mimic the meandering patterns of the River Thames. Additionally, labelling was applied to highlight key points along the river – a subtle but detailed touch.

The delight is in the detail

Handmade tiles aligned with company branding and new carpets that subtly feature the Man Group logo demonstrate the level of detail that went into the design. The delivery was just as innovative: each bespoke tile had to be expertly cut and installed.

A shared success

Overbury delivered the project on schedule, with minimal disruption, while meeting Man Group’s environmental, cost and reuse requirements. The space has also achieved a BREEAM excellent rating.

Building a good relationship with the building manager, maintenance team and other building tenants ensured the smooth running of the loading bay and goods lift, a potential pinch-point for project materials and business as usual activities. The coordination between all parties allowed the project to integrate seamlessly with the day-to-day running of the building.

The Overbury team are particularly proud of this project, which was delivered as promised by passionate people, because the collaborative approach to make it all possible aligned with our values and environmental ethos.

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