Snøhetta designs the Pangea coworking space for Digital Garage


Huge ribbons of wood provide office space in this co-working space in Tokyo, created by architecture firm Snøhetta for Japanese tech company Digital Garage.


Snøhetta developed both the interior design and the visual identity of Digital Garage’s new coworking brand, Pangea.

The wooden furniture is Japanese cedar

The company plans to open workspaces in its various offices around the world.

However, this one, located on the 10th floor of a new real estate complex in Shibuya, will serve as a test bed for ideas.

Lighting in Pangea co-working by Snøhetta for Digital Garage
It includes desks, a lounge area and a reception desk.

The name, Pangea, was the starting point of the design – Pangea was a supercontinent in the late Paleozoic and early Mesozoic which split to create the continents of today.

Digital Garage wanted to create a space that encourages people of different cultures and backgrounds to come together and collaborate.

“As a boutique office space for digital nomads, the space commemorates an era and a place where geographic, political and national constructions were not an obstacle,” said Snøhetta.

Pangea co-working offices and chairs by Snøhetta for Digital Garage
Above the head, 534 pendant lights create undulating patterns

This concept led designers to fill the space with “great furniture”, rather than adding individual tables or desks.

Two large wooden objects crisscross the entire space, fulfilling various functions. They incorporate both seating and surfaces, so they can be used by many people simultaneously.

Super wooden furniture in Pangea co-working by Snøhetta for Digital Garage
The wooden furniture gives the room a natural scent

“Built as a metaphor for both tactility and fluidity, super furniture encompasses all the essential functions of a coworking space: reception, amphitheater, phone booths, meeting spaces and individual workspaces Snøhetta said.

“The furniture also invites its users towards a greater vision through daily interactions with the co-working space and with each other.

Reception desk in Pangea co-working by Snøhetta for Digital Garage
The co-working space located on the 10th floor of a building in Shibuya

Both elements are made from Japanese cedar, a material chosen to give the room a natural scent.

Otherwise, the room remains very simple, with only a few other pieces of furniture. Seating is provided by chairs and stools to match the dark tone of the floor, while 534 hanging light bulbs give topography to the ceiling.

The space is framed by linoleum fronted cabinetry and acoustic textile wall panels, which together create an abstract image of Mount Fuji as a backdrop.

Exterior of Pangea co-working by Snøhetta for Digital Garage
This is the first of several Pangea spaces planned

While Snøhetta is best known for its architectural projects, which include an underwater restaurant and the Oslo Opera House, the company has worked on numerous interior design and branding projects in recent years.

Other examples include physical and digital retail spaces for fashion brand Holzweiler and the Oslo pop-up A Better Place to Think.

For Pangea, the studio also designed a set of logos which are used on the facade, for signage and orientation inside the building and on the website.

The photograph is by Nacasa & Partners.


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