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A holistic vision for the creation of flexible, sophisticated spaces creates a training facility that integrates astute design with effortless technology.



December 11th, 2013

Designed for the Sydney branch of the Australian Institute of Management (AIM) as a multi-purpose space to operate and meet the needs for a training facility, office/administration area, events, retail bookshop, library and members’ lounge, the fit out occupies 1410 square-metres over two floors.

The design is a major component of a revitalization of the Institute, helping to align the organisation’s values with the desired “brand personality” and customer journey.

AIM Sydney Knowledge Centre' and bookshop
Knowledge Centre and bookshop

In particular, the interweaving of technology from an early stage of the design process and the partnership with SONY allowed for connectivity, multimedia and interactive technological elements to be incorporated seamlessly and to the greatest effect.

As futurespace Senior Designer Griffen Lim comments, “The collaboration between AIM and Sony provided the opportunity to explore and expand the design scheme resulting in a holistic experiential space.” One of the prominent design features was the twitter feature wall capturing live twitter feeds, which further enhances the interactive learning experience.

AIM Sydney member loungeMembers lounge

The integration of way-finding also makes it a unique project – from the point of arrival, navigational signage located on several strategic points enhances traffic flow within the facility. A custom designed directory board on the ground floor allows staff and members to orientate themselves and locate the various destinations. A comprehensive and consistent identification signage was developed to align with AIM’s branding.

AIM Sydney 'the cube' training room
‘The CUBE’ training room

An interconnecting stair was designed to provide a vertical connection from the ground floor retail and library zone to the first floor training spaces, with a social dining hub centrally located to optimise the use of a constricted space. Maximising natural light and views throughout resulted in an active and enhanced environment for learning.

AIM Sydney meeting room and reception
Left: meeting room
Right: reception and main entrance

Some of the main feature materials include natural bamboo veneer in rich and vibrant colours, echo panel wall cladding and “fold-it” acoustic ceiling details by Woven Image. A backlit Barrisol ceiling illuminating the central stairs encourages visitors to journey upwards to the main training facility from reception.

As Lim recounts, one of the most successful elements is “the flexibility of the spaces, especially ‘The CUBE’ where the space can be used as two separate training spaces, a theatre style setting or a dining setting used during events and functions.”

AIM Sydney training roomTraining room

The design was underpinned by the objective of creating and facilitating a visitor’s journey through the defined spaces via the Learning, Working, Listening and Capturing zones.

This concept of the “customer journey” is core to AIM’s business strategy, with the belief that optimising the interaction and relationship between customers and members of staff will provide superior experiences and results.


Australian Institute of Management


Photography: Tyrone Branigan Photography

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