Designed by Kubala Washatko Architects, the 178,343sf J.W. Speaker Corporate Headquarters in Germantown, Wisconsin houses an innovative program that includes the company’s corporate headquarters on the same premises as the company’s manufacturing facility for OEM lighting solutions. Rather than separate these distinct programmatic elements, the facility embraced the inherent obstacles by combining innovative design and construction strategies to reinforce the holistic business model of J.W. Speaker and its employees. This business model was highly regarded in the initial architectural organization of the facility, which strove to digress from the prototypical manufacturing complex. Rather than entering into a separate reception environment, visitors and employees are immediately introduced to a cohesive facility that serves both corporate and manufacturing services. According to the architects’ Pattern Language description, “when approaching the building whether as a visitor, employee, or trucker, the facility must be perceived as one place, a working place where things are made as opposed to a factory with an attached office” (Kubala Washatko Architects). This is in diametric opposition to a base-case industrial facility typology and further evidences the architect and corporation’s devotion to creating a cohesive working environment.
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