WPP Campus Amsterdam: ‘Amsteldok’
Winner Gold– European Design Awards 2020
Category Brand logo
When communication services multinational WPP decided to roll out its global co-location strategy in Amsterdam it meant bringing together fifteen WPP agencies that previously operated from 11 different locations. To achieve this, they acquired the Rivierstaete building, once Europe’s largest office building. Demolition and a new build would have been easier but due to the special character and great potential of this iconic building, WPP decided to opt for regenerating it instead.
Refurbished by architectural and design consultancy BDG, the previously empty and unloved Rivierstaete building was changed into a 19,000 m2 modern campus environment. Located on the river Amstel, the box-stacked structure has been completely transformed, boasting impressive terraces, restaurants, a rooftop bar, a business lounge and an event space. WPP turned to VBAT to develop a name, brand identity, attitude and tone of voice for the building.
VBAT: “We renamed the building ‘Amsteldok’. For the logotype, the Amsterdam School of architecture – an expressive 20th century style predominant throughout the city – was an important inspiration.”
Like in all signature Amsterdam School structures, VBAT physically embedded the identity into the campus: tactile hero signage, typographic floor furniture, etched wall renderings, a crafted directory totem and embossed counters. The logotype also functions as a template for all online/digital programming and communication. The colour palette was directly derived from the materials used by the architects. Wayfinding is an integral part of the spatial experience.
VBAT: “We designed playful wayfinding icons that refer to familiar Dutch things. All these elements contribute to a real campus identity and unite fifteen very different WPP agencies into a single whole. The client has indicated they will use our visual identity framework for all its campuses worldwide.”