Developer: Liberty Property/Synterra, L.P., a joint venture of Liberty Property Trust Synterra Partners
Workplace Strategy: Francis Cauffman
Building Sustainability Consultant: Buro Happold
From the architect. The company’s new flagship office building is not only a model for sustainability and energy savings, it’s custom-designed to promote health and wellness. The building’s design aligns with GSK’s wellness and sustainability philosophies of “good working, good living” and “energy for performance”.
There are no private offices and no one has an assigned desk. The building accommodates 80% of the flagship’s workforce, saving costs and encouraging teams to work more collaboratively in open-plan break areas, the large cafeteria, or in a generous roof deck with green space. Sweeping views of Philadelphia are accessible from nearly 90% of the workspaces, which include team tables, meeting areas, social areas with soft seating, and quiet rooms. The “desks” are customized, height-adjustable benches designed by Francis Cauffman in collaboration with Haworth. Individuals can sit or even stand. They’re part of a test LEED program for ergonomics, which earned an innovation credit from the Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI).
“Francis Cauffman is very excited to see employees working and interacting throughout the entire building, and to hear the highly positive employee response to their new workplace,” said John B. Campbell, LEED AP, AIA, RIBA, Principal-in-Charge of Workplace Strategies at Francis Cauffman. “By creating an open and healthy workplace environment focused on providing the right physical and IT tools with a wide variety of work settings throughout the building, the new workplace has transformed the level of energy, engagement and connectivity across the organization.”
The inside of the building has large, open and sunlit floors, arranged around a naturally daylit central atrium, with a grand central staircase and glass-fronted meeting rooms along the interior. The four-story building has been awarded both Core & Shell and Commercial Interiors LEED Platinum certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. It is the first double LEED Platinum building in Philadelphia. It is anticipated that the innovative building systems will save as much as 30% of energy use when compared to a traditional building. These substantial energy savings are the result of the state-of-the-art building façade and high-performance glass which maximize daylight in winter while reducing heat gain and providing shading in summer. ENERGY STAR-rated lighting and equipment, as well as an astronomical time clock and cloud sensor program, activate the automatic shades on windows to control glare.