Santander House Office

Milton Keynes, United Kingdom

Our mission is to partner with Santander to consolidate their staff in Milton Keynes into a single expanded workplace location; a fully refurbished Santander House head office.

This will support Santander’s objective of being the banking employer of choice and achieve the following summarised objectives. Please download the job sheet for further details.


  • Support Santander’s objective of being the banking employer of choice
  • Create a world-class head office workplace
  • Drive improved productivity through greater collaboration and engagement


  • Significantly improve long-term asset value
  • Have zero interruption to business operations
  • Improve space utilisation by 30% through a new workplace strategy

Project summary

GDV: £100m

Project type: Commercial refurbishment, extension and atrium core

Total sq footage: 500,000 ft2

Download jobsheet

Design approach

The design comprises three primary components:

  • Existing building refurbishment
  • New build extension
  • Central atrium space

The proposals will involve the removal of the existing deeds’ stores to allow for the construction of a new block which will complete the building as a continuous ‘doughnut’ plan form. A lightweight roof structure will shelter the new enclosed, central atrium space.

Access to the building will be consolidated by providing a new central ‘street’ through the building connecting the existing entrance with a new level approach entrance on Upper Second Street. The existing building will be fully refurbished internally to match the new block, with new external fenestration.

The new building will be a harmonious combination of new and refurbished creating a cohesive and consistent building.


The internal street will be a vibrant and active artery forming the main circulation route to the lift cores and the atrium.

The existing slab level of the reception area will be lowered to increase the prestige of the main entrance by moving the steps internally. A dedicated platform lift provides access to the main entrance, and access to other levels is provided by the lift core and atrium space, thus improving the accessibility of the building.


The new atrium will become the heart and focus of the building, with two central cores providing vertical circulation off the main street. Open staircases grants access to and between the office floors above.

A tiered amphitheatre space will provide an informal setting for meetings while being capable of hosting major events and functions for up to 500 people.

The cafeteria and refreshment spaces within the atrium cater to the social hub and create further opportunities to support events and meetings in the adjacent area.

Environmental strategy and approach

The new head office will promote excellence in environmental design and sustainability and achieve BREAM Excellent certification. The new building will deliver an energy reduction of approximately 50% per person through the following design principles:

  • Mixed mode ventilation system with heat recovery to office floors
  • The atrium will assist in cooling by drawing air through space using the stack effect
  • The new building envelope is thermally efficient and offers a reduction in heating requirements and costs
  • Increased natural light via the new façade and the atrium space will reduce the need for artificial lighting
  • Efficient LED light fittings with PIR controls will reduce energy demands
  • Water usage per occupant is likely to be reduced by up to 80% with the introduction of new efficient sanitary fittings along with grey water recycling

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