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Why These 10 Companies Are Adding Plants In The Office

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When you enter “benefits of plants in the office” into Google, you get “About 145,000,000 results”.  And that’s a lot.  Because we all know there are benefits of having plants in the office.   With things like the increase of urban environments, indoor air pollutants, and the rapidly increasing desire to be around nature, the average person usually just assumes this to be true.  But sometimes a picture’s worth a thousand words.

So instead of going through and listing off the countless reasons of why plants in the office are good for you, we’ve compiled a list of 10 successful and recognizable companies in all sorts of different industries that are crushing the market right now.  Their success is all built off the backs of their employees and the places where they do what they do best.  With employees that valuable it’s no wonder why these companies go to lengths to ensure their welfare in the workplace.

1.    Facebook – Menlo Park, CA

After quickly outgrowing two company headquarters and approaching nearly one billion users, Facebook has finally found and created a campus worthy of calling home. Located at the old Sun Microsystems campus in Menlo Park, the company has transformed this aging office park dinosaur into something that fits the company’s ideals of being social, mobile, culturally-relevant, personally sustaining, and promoting self-expression.

Gensler was chosen to complete the conversion and opted to have their younger designers work on the project in an effort to bring a fresh approach to the young company’s campus. Ringing in at nearly 1 million-square-feet and filled with mostly private offices, this would prove to be no small task.

2.    Uber – London, England

Denton Associates designed the new offices of transportation company Uber, located in London, England.

UBER has a strong design pallet of patterns and colours, which Denton applied in different ways; from natural wall finishes to fabric choices and joinery details. Using this pallet creatively, we were able to give the space a solid identity. Splashes of colour and a play on their pattern created a fun back of house environment with abundant personality.

You are welcomed directly into their ‘meet and greet’ area with UBER’s logo standing loud and proud on the contrasting moss wall with the illusion of the sign floating above the moss. The ‘meet and greet’ area is between a run of informal breakout spaces which are all framed with UBER’s brand pattern scorched onto ply.

3.    Microsoft – Redmond, WA

Microsoft - Redmond Building 44 Offices - plants in the office
Photography: Benjamin Benschneider Photography, Charlie Shuck (courtesy of Microsoft)

Bora Architects have designed the new offices of global tech company Microsoft located in Building 83 in Redmond, Washington.

Building 83 creates a multi-sensory experience, incorporating tactile textures and ambient soundscaping to enhance employee happiness and productivity.

An auditory art piece titled ‘Elements’, by Ethan Rose, plays in the vestibule. The ever-changing musical composition is interpreted by software drawing from real-time data collected by a weather station on the building roof. The Portal, an all-white structure of undulating aluminum ribs marks the transition from the lobby to a four-story atrium in the building’s core.

Natural light fills this central volume, bringing together 1200 occupants from 14 work wings. An espresso bar anchors the ground floor. Above, glass conference rooms hover over the atrium rim, offering views of the activity below. The Continuum, a custom-designed wood screen made from recycled oak, traverses the walls and ceilings, filtering light and creating a visible banner of connectivity.

4.    Etsy – Brooklyn, NY

Gensler has designed the new offices of e-commerce company Etsy, located in Brooklyn, New York City.

Etsy’s new Brooklyn Headquarters is designed to showcase their culture of treating “Code as Craft.” The theme reinforces the celebration of making from end-to-end—spanning across both analog and digital space.

Blurring the lines between workplace and habitat, the headquarters is on track to become the largest Living Building Challenge Petal-Certified project in the world. The design aspires to be a fully independent, regenerative ecosystem that sets a bar for a more dynamic and robust interpretation of sustainability.

Through its materials story—sustainable, authentic, local, reclaimed—and its green embrace—nature permeating the space—the headquarters advances the potential for sustainability at all levels.

5.    Nike – New York City, NY

Rapt Studio has designed the new workspace of cable company HBO, located in Seattle, Washington.

Driven by a passion for content and technology, HBO Digital Products is charged with developing HBO’s new digital and interactive experiences and is responsible for such products as HBO GO and HBO NOW. To manage dramatic expansion in the Seattle area, HBO signed a lease for the top three floors of a new mid-rise building known as Hill7. They recognized this as an opportunity to develop a high-performance workspace that would support their main objective—reengineering entertainment.

6.    HBO – Seattle, WA

Rapt Studio has designed the new workspace of cable company HBO, located in Seattle, Washington.

Driven by a passion for content and technology, HBO Digital Products is charged with developing HBO’s new digital and interactive experiences and is responsible for such products as HBO GO and HBO NOW. To manage dramatic expansion in the Seattle area, HBO signed a lease for the top three floors of a new mid-rise building known as Hill7.

They recognized this as an opportunity to develop a high-performance workspace that would support their main objective—reengineering entertainment.

7.    Dropbox – San Francisco, CA

The file-syncing geniuses at Dropbox have moved into a spectacular office space located in San Francisco. Designed in collaboration between Geremia Design and Boor Bridges Architecture, the office space provides a flexible environment for the fast-growing team.

Geremia Design notes:

We clad the entire core of the building in a washed black walnut, and used raw copper throughout the space that will continue to patina as it is used. The copper reception desk is an original design of ours, as are all of the conference room tables (fabricated by Alexis Moran), and the couch seating in the main lobby.

We hired a local designer to make all of the desks and a traditional sign painting company for the signage above and around the conference rooms.

Plants, especially palm trees, were an important part of the design, we were dedicated to having a lot of greenery in the space. A collaboration with a local lighting designer led to the creation of innovative LED lighting in the office, rather than the traditional fluorescent lights found in most offices. We designed a ping pong ball wall was an experimental art piece in one of the hallways.

The creation of office lounges were an important part of our design, our design included a music room with a grand piano and a beautiful custom chandelier designed by Lindsey Adelman.”

8.    LinkedIn – San Francisco, CA

IA Interior Architects designed the headquarters for professional networking company LinkedIn, located in San Francisco, California.

For LinkedIn’s office tower at 222 Second Street in San Francisco, the project team at IA Interior Architects drew inspiration from the diverse landscape and history of the city. Through color, texture, pattern, and art, IA designed each floor with San Francisco front and center.

Using guidance from the client, it was a priority for the design team to create a community of new experiences that bring employees closer together with their teams, encourages them to explore the building, and features creative design elements that reflect the city and local LinkedIn Members.

10.    Autodesk – San Francisco, CA

Gensler has developed the new offices of Autodesk located in San Francisco, California.

The most recent project for Autodesk in San Francisco provides an evolved, yet new workplace that connects multiple spaces and floors within their San Francisco-located One Market campus. Fully embracing the software technology that has made Autodesk a world leader in 3D design software, we created a space that fosters a diverse, multi-generational workplace where mentoring and mentorship is encouraged and celebrated.

As with projects before, the team’s motto ‘Enabled Possibilities’ still holds true. Utilizing Autodesk’s software to inform and create the 3-Dimensional design of the space, not only helped develop the multi-faceted nature of the architecture, but also allowed employees to directly connect their work to their workplace. For this particular iteration, the team was intrigued by creating space inspired by the reductive nature of 3D printing.

BONUS OFFICE. SuccessFactors – San Francisco, CA

SuccessFactors' San Francisco Headquarters - 1 plants in the office
Photography: Sherman Takata

IA Interior Architects has designed a bright and open office for SuccessFactors‘ San Francisco Headquarters.

Located on a hillside in South San Francisco, SuccessFactors’ new global headquarters enjoys panoramic views of mountains to the northwest and water to the southwest. To integrate the interior and exterior (a client request), the design draws on the Yin-Yang concept of Chinese philosophy that is based on the interaction of complimentary opposite forces. Materials throughout the space reflect opposites found in nature—wood, fire, earth, metal, and water.

An elevator lobby clad in reclaimed wood paneling leads to a lush living wall of green plants. The reception desk, constructed with river rocks and a metal framework, sits in an open lounge area to minimize the guarded attitude of traditional reception areas. Throughout the space, suspended signage, oversized graphics, and illuminated logos celebrate the brand.

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