MID-SIZE OFFICE WINNER
SquareTrade Headquarters | San Francisco, CA
Design Blitz | San Francisco, CA

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Design Statement:
The client, which offers extended warranties for smart phones and electronics, is a casual, collaborative, and quickly-growing company. The design team was hired by the client to create a workplace that would reflect the company's democratic core values. Omitting individual offices, the focus was on creating synergistic, multi-purpose areas and celebrating the open space. The design team raised the ceilings and exposed the raw structural elements of the office, and designed the floor plan to embrace the natural light and views afforded by the office's perimeter of large windows. The cafe, in turn, was placed in the center of the floor with banks of conference rooms arranged around it to buffer noise between the two spaces. Taking cue from the rectilinear nature of the client's logo, the design team applied a series of geometric, white walls as a "skin" element to the conference room bars. The white skins extend several inches from the edges of the conference rooms, creating a floating, subtly futuristic effect. Perhaps the most important quality of the skins, though, is the glazing feature that the design team designed. Offering visual appeal in addition to functionality, the conference rooms have glazed slits at varying heights according to each room's purpose (ground level slits for high privacy, desk level for medium privacy, and standing height for maximum privacy), creating an architectural permeability that corresponds with the function of each room. The design team was able to transform client's headquarters into a place as enigmatic, limitless, and accessible as the people who work there.
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