Biz: What was the thought process for leaving the metal ceiling exposed?
MG: Leaving the metal ceiling exposed helped the space feel more modern and open, and it tied in with the look we were going for. While most facilities paint an exposed deck in white or black, we wanted to soften it in a big way, and in a way, make it more dramatic. The blues and greens used throughout the interior are a nod to the corporate colors, and we felt that the use of blue would really make the space pop.
Biz: What was the design inspiration for the exterior?
MG: We wanted to advertise the company by featuring some of EFCO’s most innovative curtain wall systems and make a real statement for the company. The curtain wall system, like the interior glazing system, is intended to be a sort of demonstration tool for prospective clients. We also played with glazing tints to echo the corporate logo.
Biz: What design elements did you include to foster a collaborative workspace?
MG: The staff at this EFCO facility is divided into various departments that each work in very different ways. We tried to address their various needs, from the highly collaborative, high-energy needs of the specialty department to the quiet and relatively solitary work of the engineering department. We created islands of storage that created collaborative layout space in some areas and played with panel heights and configurations.
Biz: How do you balance a welcoming and comfortable workspace that provides enough privacy with a more transparent and collaborative environment?
MG: We focused our energy on certain areas around the buildings including the lobby area and the break room. We used bright accent colors to help with atmosphere and added casual gathering places throughout the office. We also used furniture to subdivide the open office.
Biz: What were some of the challenges you faced when creating and then executing this new design?
MG: I think one of the principle challenges was to balance the wildly different needs of each department with the open office concept. We wanted to make sure that the staff had access to various types of spaces that would fulfill their needs.