Project Files: Frontier Developments

Bespoke terraced seating extends the stairs, and a large video screen enlivens the reception mezzanine space. Frontier Developments, Cambridge, UK. Photography @ Hufton + Crow.

Project Files: Frontier Developments, Cambridge, UK


Frontier Developments, an innovative, award-winning video-gaming company, founded by industry icon David Braben, recently moved to a new three-story building in Cambridge Science Park. Established by Trinity College in the 1970s as an incubator campus for the high-tech sector, it has become Europe’s most successful science park. Today the park covers 152 acres and is home to 6,500 people working in over 100 innovative companies. Initially housed at multiple locations within the park, Frontier Developments’ stunning new work environment is a consolidation that ensures multiple efficiencies, greater team interaction, and increased visibility. The relocation confirms the company as a serious competitor in the video gaming industry and coincides with the move to self-publish its world-class games.

Workshops and visioning sessions with Frontier Development and an understanding of employee, client, and visitor journeys, as well as extensive research, preceded the design and led to the overarching project goal: aligning physical space with current and future business needs and creating a workspace that enables creativity, collaboration, and a sense of community. With that in mind, the aesthetic concept was a play of opposites, with a neutral palette that complements unrestricted views of nature available to all staff through floor-to-ceiling windows reserved for common areas. The multifunctional cafeteria offers a variety of seating arrangements where staff can enjoy lunch with partner or family, as well as the emphasis on nature heightened by a green wall, plants, and access to outdoor seating.

Views of nature are available to all staff through floor-to-ceiling windows reserved for common areas. Frontier Developments, Cambridge, UK. Photography @ Hufton + Crow.

The cafeteria offers access to outdoor seating. Frontier Developments, Cambridge, UK. Photography @ Hufton + Crow.

Within the work area, game development spaces are designed for flexibility of team size and franchises, incorporating dedicated space for graphics and integrating with meeting and testing areas. Transition zones become shared common spaces with smaller venues for collaboration or a quiet moment. The facility also includes high-performance recording and motion capture studios.

Transition zones become shared common spaces with smaller venues for collaboration or a quiet moment. Frontier Developments, Cambridge, UK. Photography @ Hufton + Crow.

The design includes high-performance recording and motion capture studios. Frontier Developments, Cambridge, UK. Photography @ Hufton + Crow.

The reception mezzanine space, positioned halfway between the building ground floor and the basement car park, presented a significant design opportunity. The IA team created a gentle transition between the two levels, adding terraced seating to the existing stairs and a large video screen for town hall meetings and events. Product launches begun at the atrium have a clear path to presentation venues within the work environment, which include glass-walled conference rooms fully fitted for technology, and an executive suite and board room.

Frontier Developments, Cambridge, UK. Photography @ Hufton + Crow.


IA is a global firm of architects, designers, strategists, and specialists. We focus exclusively on environments through the lens of interior architecture—a radical idea in 1984, when IA was founded. We are highly connected agents of change, committed to creativity, innovation, growth, and community.



IA is a global firm of architects, designers, strategists, and specialists. We focus exclusively on environments through the lens of interior architecture—a radical idea in 1984, when IA was founded. We are highly connected agents of change, committed to creativity, innovation, growth, and community.



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