The historic warehouse in the Portland’s Pearl District had been vacant for more than a decade before Vestas’s new North American Headquarters inspired its transformation into a vibrant hub for business. The design of the office’s interior celebrates the contrast of the historic, textural fabric of the building structure against a sleek and modern working environment.
One of the client’s main goals was to encourage collaboration and communication among employees, so connectedness and visibility in the design were critical. The response was a soaring five-story central atrium that floods the core of the building with natural light, maximizes views, and creates a transparency that is both visually appealing and practical.
The work areas occupy the perimeter of the building and are defined by glass walls along the atrium, allowing for maximum visual connections to other areas and offering optimal daylight. A “tool box” of support spaces flanks each small work group. The design is based on forward-looking research into workplace psychology and Danish models of working environments.
The finish palette is purposefully minimalistic to enhance the fabric of the former warehouse and maximize sustainable design strategies. Materials were selected in respect to recycled content, regional fabrication, low- or zero-VOC coatings, FSC-certified woods, and reclaimed materials. The building’s transformation achieved LEED NC Platinum and met requirements of the National Register of Historic Places.