Founded in 1987, Target Dry is a high performance outdoor and country clothing manufacturer based in Belfast. Paul McAneary Architects was commissioned to design its office headquarters next to its production warehouse on the Castlereagh industrial estate.
With a deft handling of materials and a concern for how light penetrates and washes through space, the project transforms what is essentially a basic office building into a distinctive and civilised working environment. Paul McAneary Architects also designed the company logo, its crisp economy of line reflecting a bold new corporate identity.
The building is a simple, single-storey box, defined by a striking brass fascia like a gold ribbon gift wrapping a present. Elevating the garish corporate fascia into a thing of subtlety and beauty, the new company logo is crisply debossed on the brass strip.
Over time, the brass will weather and wear, its initial bright gold sheen softened and transformed by age and use, embodying the concept of wabi sabi that underscores much of Paul McAneary Architects’s work.
The brass is sculpted and shaped to create an angular canopy to shelter the entrance door. Defined by precisely inscribed shadow gaps, the sharply faceted canopy is a gesture of civility and welcome. Inside, light washes through the open plan space through deep roof lights augmented by long strips of artificial lighting set flush with the ceiling.
Fully glazed partition walls provide acoustic privacy without compromising the fluid layout. White walls and wooden floors create a calm, neutral ambience. Executed on a tight budget, the project does not obviously manifest its programmatic parsimony. Instead, through a spirit of ingenuity and enquiry, it seeks to create an elegant and eye-catching piece of architecture.
At night, when the logo and entrance are illuminated, the brass glows with a warm radiance, acting as a beacon and anchoring point amid the featureless industrial milieu. [By Catherine Slessor*]
Contract Value Private
Location Belfast, Northern Ireland
Client Target Dry Ltd
Design TeamPaul McAneary Architects
Design Service Planning, Architectural deign, Facade / Entrance cantilever design, Interior, FF&E, Lighting