EDL Regional Hub

Client        /     EDL Pte. Ltd.
Sector       /      Lamniate Materials, Retail
Service     /      Architecture/Digital/Experience/Spatial

Newly launched in 2024, the EDL Regional Hub was built in collaboration with our architectural counterparts at Formwerkz. Designed as an expression of the organisation being a sum of different parts, the EDL Regional Hub is envisioned as a collective of different volumes architecturally. Each business function is represented through different material applications, and the volumes interlock with each other just like how their business functions are interconnected. The front facade is expressed almost like a 3D storybook unfolding, with each chapter defined uniquely yet intertwined. The central off-form concrete and metal mesh stair core that serves to connect the different volumes vertically, is used as the architectural beacon for the building, and it is symbolically abstracted from their iconic laminate catalogue. 


EDL took it upon themselves to expand the definition of 'laminates business' beyond the sale and resale of laminate products; they used their business as a platform to inspire the design industry and help take the level of design in Singapore to a different level. Over the years, the team expanded the business beyond their core capabilities, and they came to realise that they needed a new office space that could house all their different business units and serve their ever-growing business needs. The team engaged the Afternaut to create a regional hub that would encompass a product experience centre, workshop, as well as an office space.


When we first approached this project, we started off with architectural ideation. We looked at all the different business entities as a whole and analyzed how they could come together to form a coherent structural and spatial narrative. We wanted the building to represent the different business functions and entities housed within. To achieve this, we explored different material applications and forms and eventually arrived at the idea of interlocking volumes to represent the interconnection between the different business functions.

With our learnings from the previous project, we knew that the new showroom had to be a destination-driven space; the new EDL Regional Hub was located in an area just as remote as—if not more remote than—the last showroom. In order to draw visitors in and convince them to make the long trip to the space, we would have to create an experience that would give them meaning beyond just buying a product. The new showroom had to be one that can and would inspire and engage different stakeholders—be it homeowners, designers, contractors, or even developers—and connect with them on a personal level. 

Design Approach

As this is a family-run business, the employer-employee relationships are extremely close. Hence, the architecture is focused on building human-centric spaces to foster closer ties. The in-between spaces are non-incidental. The blocks are built around a central courtyard where visual links are created from all directions and levels, giving way to a highly communicative green space for the enjoyment of both employees and guest visitors. 

Secondary open garden terraces located at different parts of the building form part of a network of breakout spaces that provide users with the option to choose their preferred outdoor experience depending on the time of day, based on optimal microclimatic conditions. While incorporating sensitive design features and passive cooling strategies to better mitigate the tropical climate, we have arrived at a piece of architecture that seeks a perfect equilibrium between business functionality and the well-being of its users.

Stepping into the space is akin to stepping into the pages of a story book. The first thing you see upon entering the space is a giant lampshade, which — due to its scale — makes you feel like a miniscule being. Kind of like Alice in Wonderland when she drinks the shrinking potion. It shifts your perspective and sets a tone for the journey that you’re about to embark on within the space. Then as you journey through the space, you experience the materials in varying states, scale, and proximity. This again brings about this deep sense of wonder and adventure.

For further questions regarding this project, please feel free to reach out to hello@theafternaut.com for more information. 

The Afternaut Group Pte Ltd. 2024


The Afternaut Group Pte Ltd. 2024