In this issue’s big feature story on workplace design, our guest editor—Kay Sargent, director of workplace design at Lend Lease—emphasizes that sustainability in our offices will soon be just as much about how people feel at work, rather than whether or not the building they work in was constructed with sustainably sourced materials. The Zimmerman advertising office in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, designed by Gensler and made possible by Omnicom (who purchased the agency three renovated floors in a five-story building), proves to be a prime, current day example of this prediction (though all products pictured were considered from a sustainability angle). Here, we choose three words to explore just how this workplace operates as its very own “town square” and keeps its employees happy.
Communication \kə-ˌmyü-nə-ˈkā-shən\ (noun)
The act or process of using words, sounds, signs, or behaviors to express or exchange information or to express your ideas, thoughts, feelings, etc. to someone else.
The Zimmerman office was expressly designed to foster communication, with the open interconnecting stair linking the reception area and executive space on the fourth floor with the third’s workstations and lounge. The stair “promotes serendipitous encounters and shared experiences,” serving as the office’s own “town square.”
Economical ēkəˈnämik(ə)l/ (adj.)
Marked by careful, efficient, and prudent use of resources.
A number of factors led the team on this project to better the estimated construction cost of $83 per square foot to just $75 per square foot. Exceptional due diligence by structural engineer Thornton Tomasetti combined with Gensler’s design aided this cut in costs, as did the stair, which came in $250,000 under budget.
Hub \ˈhəb\ (noun)
The central and most active part or place.
The second floor serves as a base for the design leadership team and as a command hub for social media. When the creative team needs to review a TV commercial, they enter one of the office’s “living rooms” that serve as a part of a collaboration ribbon that also boasts breakout areas and open meeting rooms.