Delta Dental is a national non-profit dental insurance provider with 39 independent member companies devoted to preventative care for oral health and hygiene. With the hopes of creating an economic branding and highly visible promotional device, Delta employed the architectural services of OPN Architects to develop their corporate headquarters along a major interstate.
The facility is sited in an existing office park in Johnston, Iowa and is organized into two primary volumes: a private executive wing containing spaces for private office space, board rooms and a break room and the other wing devoted to supplemental office space and various support spaces. These two wings are integrated by a bright atrium serving as a public lobby and a common circulation path (see exploded axonometric diagram below). Each of the wings was developed to serve the program within while maintaining the building concept as a promotional device.
Accordingly, the southern façade (facing the interstate), features a prominent architectural sun scrim which not only serves as the housing for the branding device but also protects interior office space from solar heat gain and glare. In addition to serving as the signature element of the simple yet elegant structure, it also serves a legitimate purpose with regards to mitigation of the interior environment. The remainder of the structure is clad in a terra cotta rainscreen which drastically decreased construction time and efficiency of installation. This cladding system informed the rhythms utilized throughout the facility, including the full height window walls that provide ample daylighting for the interior office space as well as views of the site.
The interior spaces were designed to be flexible to accommodate future growth for the company. In addition to articulated office space pushed to the perimeter of the structure, there is also flexible open office space that can adapt to meet the needs of Delta in the short and long term.