Slack Toronto Office

In 2016, Slack became the world’s fastest growing tech company in history. After just a handful of years, the startup known for its office messaging app had already amassed offices around the globe, and recently opened its second office in Canada. Dubbeldam Architecture + Design was selected by Slack to create an imaginative space that reflected the company culture and its relationship with technology. Set in a former textile factory in the heart of downtown Toronto, three storeys within the interior of this mid-rise brick and beam building were redesigned to meet all the needs of a twenty-first century, Class A tech office, inspired both by the building’s heritage and the company’s work culture.

To reinforce the Slack brand, physical “threads of communication” enliven the space. As an allusion to both the communication inherent in the messaging application itself and a homage to the lines of yarn that were utilized in the knitting process, these threads manifest themselves in linear, material geometries. Networking cables in bold colours are both functional and decorative, and run across ceilings and walls to emphasize the length of each floor. In the reception area, lines of felt clad the wall and ceiling in a continuous diagonal, behind corporate signage. Even light fixtures are angular and appear to thread through each meeting room at distinct angles. In all cases, accent colours for design elements and furniture are derived from Slack’s logo as a continuous reminder of the invigorated interior’s new identity. Through these means, the material nature of the design pays tribute to Slack’s company values of craftsmanship and heritage.

A welcoming, open concept workspace to accommodate upwards of 142 employees was the primary requirement of the design brief. A central core was designed to host a variety of communal spaces, each with its own contrasting pop of colour to offset the neutral palette of the surrounding desks. In an era when the modern office is more mobile than ever, relaxed, collaborative spaces where employees can simultaneously work and socialize are critical. The café, breakout rooms, and various lounges serve this precise purpose, as employees are encouraged to find the ambient spaces that best suit their desired comfort. Feature walls on each floor act as vast peg boards, where workplace slogans, witty remarks, or the even company logo can be refashioned by all. The overall design builds upon the company’s well-established tenet of providing engaging spaces for work and play.

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