the spheres will be packed with a plant collection worthy of top-notch conservatories, allowing Amazon employees to amble through tree canopies three stories off the ground, meet with colleagues in rooms with walls made from vines and eat kale Caesar salads next to an indoor creek. [...]
“The whole idea was to get people to think more creatively, maybe come up with a new idea they wouldn’t have if they were just in their office,” said Dale Alberda, the lead architect on the project at NBBJ — nytimes.com
While the benefits of greenery for employee productivity is well established, and any good tech company needs to play up the "serendipity machine" game, Amazon is taking this to an architectural level:The spheres will have meeting areas called treehouses, and suspension bridges high off the ground...
NBBJ and Visual Vocal will leverage current-generation VR and augmented reality (AR) systems, with a near-term focus on mobile VR platforms for optimal accessibility and scale. While a number of firms in the design industry have examined the promise of VR, this partnership marks the first instance of an established design firm incubating a VR startup inside its own offices and developing new tools to improve decision-making and remove waste from the design process. — 12newsnow.com
"I have absolutely no doubt that Kaiser Permanente's new hospital in Oakland is a big step up from its predecessor in terms of the facilities offered to patients and their loved ones.
But in terms of how it looks and feels outside - even by the dismal standard of recent American hospital design - the stocky compound that opened last week is enough to make you sick." — San Francisco Chronicle
Reminiscent of a greenhouse or conservatory, the three intersecting biodomes replace an earlier plan for a six-story office building and would establish a visual focus and “heart” for the three-block project, according to plans filed with the city.
The spheres will offer “a plant-rich environment” filled with species from mountainous ecologies around the globe, chosen for their “ability to coexist in a microclimate that also suits people,” according to the plans. — seattletimes.com
Steve Jobs talked about his connection to the outdoors. So we said, 'Let's take that approach. Let's make sure every employee has access to the outdoors within one floor.' So we took a series of two-story buildings and stacked them on top of each other, and put gardens in between them. — latimes.com
The architects often walk clients through it to show how an open environment works. There’s not a private office or cubicle anywhere, and there’s constant low-level hubbub: people in motion, and gathering into small groups. The tour makes some clients nervous; they wonder how their own workers would concentrate in such an environment. — NYT
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