One major challenge for this project was creating a cohesive campus from the existing buildings purchased by the client for this project. First, an overall program was created to determine the needs of each department which range from a 24/7 Call Center, Lending, Facilities Management, Training/Development, HR, Marketing, IT, Corporate Finance, Legal, Executives and Board-of-Directors. To overcome this challenge, the design team executed program findings through thoughtful planning ensuring each building truly met the needs of the client and the associated departments. The first building which is approached when arriving on campus provides the primary starting point and welcomes employees and visitors alike. Areas such as the main lobby/reception, conferencing and training center, corporate support departments, along with a full-service café set the tone for the campus. The second building is linked to the first building by way of a new outdoor meeting, dining and activity park equipped with a variety of seating options, gaming, BBQ space and direct connection to the full-service cafe. The client prioritized this design concept to connect the buildings and supported the removal of parking spaces to achieve this goal. The second building, holding the best views, houses service teams such as lending and the 24/7 call center as well as a multitude of inviting break areas, locker room and fitness facility. The result is a headquarters that provides for the differing needs of each department yet brings the entire organization together to collaborate towards their overall goal of serving their member’s financial needs.
Having a “Mission Fed Moment” is more than a tag line for the client, a member-owned, not-for-profit financial cooperative. The client wanted to ensure their philosophy be exemplified in their working environment. To accomplish this, all headquarters’ employees engaged in an in-depth evaluation. The results drove an overall theme of “A workplace connected to life’s important moments” that embodies “Community, Family, Connection, Service, Approachability, Welcoming, Flexibility and a Focus on the Future”, while exuding a sense of stability, strength, permanence and integrity. The workplace design addresses the evaluation findings in a multitude of ways. A Universal Planning approach allows for long-term flexibility. Glass front private offices are located near the central core of the building while open offices were placed along the perimeter, allowing for natural daylight and views for all employees. Collaboration spaces are dispersed throughout. Inviting break hubs and shared conferencing are centralized for easy access to all employees, and spaces such as a full-service café with healthy offerings, fitness facility and access to outdoor meeting and dining spaces support employee wellness. To project strength and stability, permanence and integrity, the design integrates bold masses, strong vertical and horizontal lines, and materials such as stone and wood. Fluid curving lines found in ceiling elements and flooring transitions, along with radial design integration at key areas express a welcome approachability. President and CEO Debra Schwartz said it best, “This is a truly a Mission Fed Moment for all of us.”