PROGRAM 24-HOUR TECH HEADQUARTERS
SIZE 10,000 sf
LOCATION Longwood, Florida
Accommodating the needs of a 24-hour modern workplace requires design solutions that strive for advancement and evolution in architecture. For this project, the design team was challenged to build upon the tech culture of the client while enhancing corporate identity. The client is an IT provider that implements round-the-clock support to the healthcare industry. The management relies on a family-like atmosphere--with a strong focus on positive daily interactions--to promote a high level of trust among the diverse staff composed of approximately 50 people. For its new headquarters, this tech organization sought an innovative, environmentally-friendly design that both accommodated required services and encouraged wellness in the workplace.
The primary concepts of the design are centered around Business Ecosystems and the Modern-Casual Workplace, and the architectural intersections of these precepts with the Community Story. This model depends upon the provision of both structured and non-structured workspaces to foster strong interpersonal relationships and promote individual and group productivity. A variety of workspace options are incorporated into the design, be it a lounge with soft seating, exterior recreation areas, or “activated zones” that encourage impromptu communications. These essential spaces of exchange within the workplace foster a sense of wellness for the employees and speak to the communal corporate environment.
The campus-like structure engages the landscape on a two-acre wooded site in Longwood, Florida, marked by tall pines and stands of oak trees. At the center, the 10,000-square foot headquarters building transforms a straightforward and efficient system—the pre-engineered metal structure—into a spatial experience with a modern aesthetic. The structural system of the building is exposed on the interior and penetrates the exterior envelope to create shaded areas and conceptually bridge the indoors and outdoors. Transparency and simplicity in the design maximize natural light throughout.
The building’s principle façade opens to the north and connects to a projecting solar canopy, continuing the horizontal building form into the surrounding landscape. The innovative glass-photovoltaic panels provide cover and generate low-cost electricity in all weather conditions, including low light and on cloudy days. Throughout the building, the façade is opened and broken-up with either storefront glazing or punched openings.
The expansive sense of volume extends the full length of the interior, which is organized into three primary areas: warehouse, workplace, and community spaces. The interior workplace is divided into two areas, with open offices along the north façade and private offices situated on the south side of the building. This collaborative system enhances face-to-face interactions while also providing sequestered spaces for meetings and individual work. The lobby and fitness areas mark a transition from work to the community. Within the community area, employees can gather informally, find a private area for breaks, or engage as a group. The solar canopy connects the gathering spaces to the adjacent green spaces provided for outdoor recreation to the east of the building.