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Designing A Destination For The Global Cycling Community

Updated: Jan 18, 2020

United Cycling Lab & Store: Retail experience and Head Quarter by Johannes Torpe Studios:

A dull industrial building from the 1990s has been transformed into a modern monastery for the science of cycling. High performance bicycles from Argon 18 are displayed in a futuristic retail experience that blends elements from the world of technology, engineering, mechanics and community. Here harmony exists between man, nature and machine. It is a space that fosters knowledge, learning and innovation and perhaps even more importantly, invites people to dream.

An attempt to find a connection between the bright colors of different ice-creams and the informal experience of enjoying a dessert while relaxing on the beach, Cream Affair is the first of its kind desert studio in Pondicherry. Located right in the heart of the city, which is always crowded by tourists and beach-goers, the studio is just a walking distance away from the beach.

“In just over a year we have succeeded in turning 1650m2 of storage space into a modern, accessible and welcoming piece of architecture and an unparalleled retail experience.” – Johannes Torpe

Just North of Copenhagen surrounded by lush green forests and country roads, you find a new destination for the global cycling community. The space combines the functions of a traditional showroom with the ambition to support the global bicycle community. With knowledge, innovation and learning as keywords the new United Cycling Lab & Store offers a full experience of the world of professional cycling. In short, a modern monastery for the science of cycling.

Picture courtesy : Johannes Torpe Studios

The design concept draws its inspiration from the detailed engineering of a carbon fiber bicycle. It seeks to highlight the dreams and engineering that the bicycles represent. We have done this by juxtaposing the world of nature and science and the meeting between man and machine. The architectural design follows a tight grid system that is introduced throughout the building and perhaps is most noticeable in the interior design. This choice pays tribute to the precision of the products and ensures a modular and scalable retail solution for a global roll-out.

Picture courtesy : Johannes Torpe Studios

Concrete floors, bright white walls, custom built illuminated product display furniture and 6 meter ceiling heights with white luminous ceiling panels make the impressive framework of the showroom. One wall is a customized illuminated display for 8 bikes and suspended from the ceiling are five pantographs that elegantly display a selection of bicycle prototypes. With the click of a button,they can be lowered down for inspection by the customer. Mechanical, old fashioned and tactile all at once. Five display elements with lit surfaces and a cabinet box allow customers to take a closer look and feel of the individual bike parts.

Picture courtesy : Johannes Torpe Studios

The south wall separates the showroom from the product gallery and is covered in perforated raw steel plates with a brass mesh attached on the backside. Through the perforations one can sense the inviting and cozy space of the product gallery. Here customers can find top-tier equipment and spare parts elegantly presented on customized oak display units. Moving from the cozy wooden nest of the gallery into the grandiose, white and almost sterile showroom is a transition that displays the contrasts between nature and science, simultaneously combining the world of men with machines. It is a transition from low to high ceiling and from darkness into light.

Picture courtesy : Johannes Torpe Studios

The showroom is designed to elevate the bicycles and display their sovereignty. It is a chapel for the bicycles. It offers an invitation to admire the products for their technical superiority, to inspect and touch them. All elements in the showroom and the product gallery follow the same grid lines. The combination of precision and the very technical products on display creates a clinical yet ethereal atmosphere – almost like entering a sci-fi laboratory.

“In short, we have designed a retail space that fosters knowledge, learning and innovation and perhaps even more important, inspires people to dream.” – Johannes Torpe

Project: United Cycling Lab & Store: Retail experience and Head Quarter Client: United Cycling Location: Lynge, Denmark Year: 2018 Creative Director: Johannes Torpe Project Leader: Kit Sand Ottsen Design Team: Karolina Pajnowska, Rachel Jayne Mackay, Suguru Kobayashi, Allan Sejer, Allan Kruse

Instagram: Photography: Alastair Philip Wiper

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