Uniqlo City Creative Workspace Opens in Tokyo
On March 14, Principals Brad Cloepfil, Kyle Lommen and Project Architect Yuri Suzuki joined the leadership of Fast Retailing to present the company’s new flagship design and distribution facility to the press. Located in Ariake District along Tokyo Bay, Uniqlo City is a 200,000 s.f. creative studio that supports a home staff of 1000 and visiting personnel from the company’s global outlets and production facilities.
The project was designed to unite a previously dispersed workforce, and equally, to serve as a creative catalyst to respond to a rapidly changing apparel industry. Comprised of open work lofts, collaboration spaces, product and marketing test facilities and diverse amenities, Uniqlo City has completely transformed the culture of work at Fast Retailing to make it more engaged, responsive and interconnected. The project was widely hailed as the first of its kind in Tokyo. True to its name, Uniqlo City takes its inspiration from the energy and possibility of urban life. A meandering street runs the length of the building, connects all studios and resources, and provides opportunities for informal encounters. New “Town Squares”—including a gallery, library / reading room and a digitally-linked information hub—allow workers to share their creative work, seek inspiration, and stay connected to currents in fashion and global culture.
One of the principal goals of the project was to show respect and support for all of Fast Retailing’s staff. As John Jay, Fast Retailing’s global creative director stated: “We must respect our people and we must give them a beautiful place to work—How can we ask them to make beautiful things if they don’t work in an environment that’s beautiful itself?”