Location: Grand Rapids, Michigan
“WHERE VALUE IS CREATED THROUGH DESIGN.” For this redesign of the community and collaboration spaces of an architectural design and engineering office, we sought to reinforce the mission, vision, and values of the firm for its employees and guests. THE CHALLENGE The upper-level entrance and an underused lower level atrium separated the office into halves without appropriate spaces for meeting and collaboration. The work of the office occurred at its edges and was not visible to its guests and clients entering the formal lobby and atrium. Within a limited budget and existing footprint, the design team drove to create spaces authentic to its design process. WORKPLACES FOR FOCUSED DREAMING The renovated office spaces use design to celebrate the work staff do together and the spaces that are the product of that work. Spaces support staff and client interactions to empower integration and collaboration. CONNECT. The office designs with its clients, and purpose built conference rooms provide spaces for this intense work as well as spaces for pause, respite, and recharging. Long axial lines reappear in lighting, casework, and floor finishes to encourage views and motion across spaces, towards the outdoors, and deeper into work areas. An 85’ foot banner soaring over the custom wood display wall unites office work zones, is a living artifact celebrating work, and reinforces a common language of mission, vision, and values. CREATE. Walls don’t only divide spaces but are used for creative expression. Floor to ceiling white boards are surfaces for projection and sharing ideas. Seamlessly integrated technology promotes a work anywhere mentality. CHANGE. A variety of furniture solutions are used to accommodate multiple work styles. Reorganizing and expanding the office’s common spaces while designing them for flexibility creates more opportunities for work, relationship building, and cultural unity for all users of the building.