Confidential Technology Headquarters
A successful point-of-sale lending platform had already outgrown several offices in San Francisco when it approached SmithGroup about a new headquarters. It wanted a contemporary, collaborative workplace with all the amenities today’s tech workers demand. It also had a pragmatic attitude about the evolving environment in which it operated: As a company seeking to shake up the financial services industry, it needed a workplace that could easily adapt to different user groups, and expand or shrink quickly and cost-efficiently.
The design solution was guided by their newly leased location, several 15,000-square-foot floors of a 1960s Modernist tower in the Financial District. Rather than adapting for space needs with moveable walls or workstations, the company could simply add or shed full floors by subleasing when necessary.
Each floor was designed to include a variety of spatial typologies, with maximum ease-of-use adaptability by the end user. The main perimeter workspace comprises electric height-adjustable workstations arranged in groups of six, soft seating areas that can easily be reconfigured, and informal collaborative pods created with simple birch frames and plexiglass panels. Individual lockers keep personal workspaces sleek and clutter-free. The core of each floor houses meeting rooms, huddle spaces and a library/reading room. It adds up to a 50:50 ratio of personal to group space, and a density of approximately 130 RSF per employee.
The main entrance floor features a generous reception area with views across San Francisco Bay and Alcatraz. Beyond this public space, a bar/café provides healthy snacks and drinks and informal social space. An adjacent annex building houses a catered servery and is a popular lunchtime gathering area. Equipped with multi-media technology, the annex can also host presentations, classes and events for up to 400.