Skilled, sensitive and successful experience of adaptive reuse happens to be one of our core specialities. We recognize that every building was “purpose built” at the time it was constructed. But purposes and people change, sometimes unrecognizably. And that leaves buildings which also have to change, in order to accommodate the needs of the future.
Each Schmidt Associates studio team has particular relish for the following challenge. It’s about taking a pre-existing space and engaging with the puzzle of how it can accommodate a very different activity, or very different people, without losing its identity and its integrity. We have successfully risen to the challenge in environments as diverse as the law office and the laboratory, the courtroom and the dorm room. In each case, no matter how different the individual demands, our approach in principle is consistent. We work to understand the space as it stands. We work to understand what its owners and users want from its future and how that will impact on its current form. Then we free our imagination. We dare to think without boundaries about how radically different the space could be tomorrow, yet how it can retain its roots in what we see in front of us today.
The results are outstanding. We create spaces that are not so much “reused” as re-experienced. Our clients tell us that when they first walk into one of our adapted environments, it’s as if they are seeing it for the very first time. Even if they had previously spent years or decades working or living in it. A common response is “I just couldn’t have imagined this kind of transformation”. While always delighted by their reactions, we don’t lose sight of the fact that this is our job: to deliver reality, reimagined.
The Same. And Yet Very Different.
Schmidt Associates applies a holistic approach when it comes to adaptive reuse. We understand the way separate factors need to work together. We reconcile the old with the new through deep knowledge of how modern systems combine with historical elements. We accommodate the needs of each client with the newest technologies and amenities available, while always honoring the original space. From plans and permissions (we can liaise with the appropriate agencies to secure any permissions your adapted space may need) through to handover, we remain hands-on throughout. And at the end, you can look forward to an adapted space that remains the same in all its key regards yet is very positively different.