Commercial Architecture

Commercial alteration, Ben Lomond Crescent

Office building renovation
Project Snapshot
Year Completed: 2023
Location: Papakura Heights, Auckland
Professional Service/s: Architectural design, fire design and implementation, Interior design, building consent documentation



Forvia Hella engaged THE DESIGNFIRE to redesign their Auckland office. The work completed so far represents stage one of a larger project, which will later include the building of a mezzanine floor and the redevelopment of their laboratory.

The project scope for stage one included the following:

• A full redesign of the existing office, reception and boardroom.

• Fire design and implementation, including improvements to the existing Fire Safety System.

• Engaging and liaising with all specialist consultants, including lighting and electrical, and mechanical design.

• Working drawings, specifications, and documentation for the building consent.

• Complete interior design and specification.

• Implementation of interior branding and signage.

• Liaison and negotiation with the main contractor to facilitate the fit-out.


In Detail

Forvia is the seventh-largest global automotive supplier. Worldwide, one out of every two vehicles is equipped with Forvia products. Their Auckland office hadn’t been touched for over 30 years and was a poor reflection of the Forvia brand, so THE DESIGNFIRE was asked to bring the office interior up to an international standard. The office space design was a challenge. Staff numbers at Forvia Hella have grown over recent years and are expected to continue increasing. Therefore, we needed to accommodate 25 people but plan for more. Although we wanted to encourage cross-department interaction, we also needed to accommodate the needs of departments that required privacy and intimacy to perform their duties. Our solution included a combination of open-plan areas and glass-partitioned offices to give clear sight lines from wall to wall. We stepped the ceilings and mixed standard grids with smooth gib surfaces to break up the space and create visual interest. We created a neutral and contemporary colour palette, from the carpet tile on the floor through to the custom cabinets, in warm grey-brown timber hues. Router cut and patterned acoustic wall panelling added texture while also providing acoustic buffering in what could otherwise be a bit of an echo chamber. We added Forvia Hellas corporate branding strategically added throughout the environment, which introduced touches of vibrant colour and reinforced the brand identity. Secondary brand colours were used on the floor to delineate the different departments. We are excited to get the fit-out for this project underway in early 2023. Meanwhile, the design for stage two is underway.



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The team of THE DESIGNFIRE were efficient and they really knew what was needed. It's been a pleasant surprise to work with them.
Overall, we were very happy with THE DESIGNFIRE. The communication was great, and the project was completed on time. Everyone who has done building work says the project will be late. But it was not in this case. Well-organized, good project management and on-time. Being neutral renovation, a big picture overview at the start would have been beneficial for us. It's fantastic. And brought the building back to life and into a new century. Probably the timing and the knowledge of the individual team from THE DESIGNFIRE, they were very responsible and they were often chasing us for answers.
Kirstein van Eeden
Hella New Zealand Ltd
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