Project Royal Auris Group
The Royal Auris Group moved from two locations back into one and returned to historical ground: the Amman square in Rotterdam. The new building that was erected here is home to a state-of-the-art Audiological Centre, the support services and Executive Board. Flexibility, functionality and future value were paramount to the project. This is reflected in both the building and its furnishing – realised by Gispen. This is where years of furnishing experience in both care and office environments have come together.
Two user groups
Auris provides aid to anyone who has trouble hearing, speaking or using language. Auris researches, treats, supports and teaches. For both children and adults. In September 2016, the completely new Auris Audiological Centre opened its doors in the Amman square – where Auris was also housed in the past. All the employees of the former location in Rotterdam moved to the new building, as well as the support services and executive office, which were formerly located in Gouda. Housing these two different user groups is what made this project unique. On the one hand, the building had to comply with the special requirements that apply to performing advanced hearing examinations. On the other hand it had to accommodate the employees of the head office who collaborate, meet and have lunch there.
Tranquillity in addition to dynamic noise
The end result was realised in close cooperation between housing consultancy firm Beijer Advies, Ector Hoogstad Architects and Gispen, the permanent furnishing partner of Auris. Stef Wijnen, director of Beijer Advies: 'The new building combines the tranquillity required by a care environment with the dynamic noise of a work environment. Without one user group being disturbed by another. The Audiological Centre is located on the ground floor, making it easily accessible to visitors. The centre is fully equipped for medical checks and establishing diagnoses. The hearing tests take place in sound booths on which the trade association imposes strict requirements. The meeting centre and restaurant are located on the first floor of the building. The second floor is where the office environment for the support services and Executive Board is housed. A versatile and deliberately more open environment than before. Cross-departmental cooperation and being able to find and meet one another easily were key requirements for Auris.’
The specialist’s thoughts
‘Together with the architect, we made a few visits to Gispen’s Inspiration Centre to make a selection of products. The items are used to their full advantage at the new building of Auris. In my opinion, Gispen’s true strength lies in their ability to draw on their expertise from the start of a project, to really compile an interior together and to provide custom solutions wherever needed.’
A friendly and quiet place
Auris strived to create an inviting environment for its visitors. When entering the building, there are separate waiting areas created specially for (families with) children and for the elderly. Kim Lantwaard, Gispen account manager: 'This is where we installed colourful Davant train benches, with plenty of room for children to play. This layout allows visitors to wait in a friendly and quiet place, instead of having to sit in a clinical space.’ The consultation and examination rooms of the Audiological Centre are more functionally furnished, while retaining an inviting look and design. Marmoleum decibel flooring contributes to the acoustics of the building. The offices on the upper floors facilitate a variety of activities: from teamwork to working individually. Kim Lantwaard: 'The foundation is formed by Gispen IC and TM desks, including sit/stand variants. The Low Res Elephants – a stool and lamp in one – add some playfulness to the office. The outdoor space is where employees can get some fresh air or gain inspiration; the area is equipped with various furniture pieces from Fermob, finished in vibrant colours.’
Specials and cable management
Gispen supplied various custom solutions. These include tailormade examination tables, designed by Gispen designer Peter de Boer. These tripod tables with a special curve offer sufficient space to place all measuring equipment and hold a consultation at the same time. The cables for all the equipment have been neatly tucked away; Gispen provided a cable management service both for the Audiological Centre and office environment. This allows the employees to work cleanly, practically, safely and hygienically (due to easy cleaning of workstations).
Photography: Koninklijke Auris Groep
The employee’s thoughts
‘The best thing about working for Auris is that we can apply all our expertise in our daily activities. This building is where a medical and office environment merged. Gispen is also furnishing the Auris schools of special education. Our aim in furnishing this new building was to create a practical environment with a friendly appearance. This makes it all the more enjoyable to hear from users that we have really succeeded in doing so.’