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HOK Designs LEED Platinum, Activity-Based Workplace for AstraZeneca

Tradeline takes a look at AstraZeneca’s new 100,000-sq.-ft. open office and lab facility in South San Francisco.

Excerpted from Tradeline:

The facility is designed around AstraZeneca’s iWork philosophy, an activity-based working approach that embraces industry best practices for employee well-being and productivity. It features open collaborative lab and office environments, team rooms, conference rooms, and a wide variety of activity-based workstations with ample natural light that include treadmill-equipped team rooms and other alternatives. Activity-based workspaces give personnel the ability to choose a place in the office that is best suited to doing their specific tasks. Spaces are designed to create opportunities for a variety of activities from focused work to formal and informal meetings.

“We set up activity-based workspaces all around the site to support our open shared seating areas with a variety of options for the many various things employees do throughout the day,” said Martin Sharpless, project director for AstraZeneca at the Oyster Point complex “Every niche was set up with different environments for people to work in, and all of them get used.”

In addition to activity-based workspaces, the building supports the iWork model with adjustable desks and ergo-dynamic chairs, pantries offering organic food options, and an on-campus gym. Other lifestyle amenities include a basketball court, bowling alley, full-service restaurant and bar, and 10 miles of campus-accessible trails.

Neighborhood zones were designed to evolve from assigned seating to shared seating that accommodates about 24-30 people each, with the ability to grow to 50 people per neighborhood in the future. The layout also provides a two- to four-person team room for every 10 people. While there are a few secure labs and doors by necessity, the entire building is open and accessible to the campus population.

Environmental Sustainability

A a number of design elements went into the building that helped it receive a LEED Platinum score, which is traditionally difficult for laboratories to achieve. Because the building is located in South San Francisco, it can operate with 100 percent renewable energy as part of the ECO100 program offered by local power provider, Peninsula Clean Energy (PCE). In addition to utilizing reusable and low-VOC building materials, the carpet squares were made from bags harvested from the ocean and recycled into carpet.

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