The Brief

Haitong, an international Hong Kong-based financial institution, planned to relocate two separate divisions from Paternoster Square and Moorgate to a central London location as part of its global organisational strategy. 1 Aldermanbury Square, previously occupied by IBM, was chosen for its accessibility and the quality of its services and finishes.

The task was to convert the Cat B space on the third floor into high-quality offices that met the global and technical standards established by the Hong Kong HQ. The most crucial element was ensuring a seamless migration of the trading systems from the two existing buildings to the new office.

1 Aldermanbury Square, London EC2
Sq Ft
12 weeks


The Solution

The project basically involved adapting the existing IBM installation into a high-class office that aligned with Haitong’s corporate style and business goals. The client wished to retain the overall architectural effect of the IBM fit-out, while ensuring its specific requirements and technological needs were met.

In order to maintain a level of consistency in the detail and materials, we engaged with the subcontractors and suppliers from the original IBM project. Working to an environmentally friendly concept, we offered various design options to help control costs and free up resources for the more critical aspects of the move.

With no intermediaries involved, Area worked directly with the client to deliver the scheme. As part of our service we coordinated lease deadlines and landlord approvals to ensure the project proceeded on schedule. This was particularly important because the work had to be phased to ft with the all-important IT migration programme. Among other challenges, with two divisions occupying the same floor, Chinese wall features had to be incorporated to comply with financial trading standards.

Project Insight

‘The execution of the detailing to match the previous IBM ft-out was challenging, particularly as we also had to add new technology and Chinese wall compliance to the existing Cat B layout. We achieved a successful outcome by seeking other design options that were less critical to the business.’
- Chris Hesketh, Construction Director, Area


The Alan Turing Institute




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