Housing nearly 500 high-tech jobs, @4240 anchors the Cortex Innovation Community, an urban research district in midtown St. Louis. HOK redesigned the three-story building, constructed in 1948 as a telephone handset factory, for developer Wexford Science and Technology. It provides flexible lab and office space for tenants involved in the life sciences, research, technology, innovation and entrepreneurship.
Large floor plates and highly adaptable mechanical systems enable @4240 to support tenants ranging from small startups to established research organizations. The space includes fully equipped conference rooms, open meeting areas, green spaces, cafés and casual gathering spots.
Floor openings in the middle of the building allow skylights to illuminate lab and work spaces, a two-story concourse and an interior courtyard. Exterior lighting concealed within the landscaping activates the building’s grounds at night, and a bespoke neon sign on the roof draws visitors to @4240’s frequent networking events.
HOK’s design for the LEED Platinum-certified project includes extensive use of renewable building materials and energy efficient measures, including a 50-kV photovoltaic array. The team worked within historic guidelines to restore the building’s deteriorating brick facade and upgrade the industrial windows with historically accurate, insulated replacement glazing. Modeling projected that the building would be 45 percent more energy efficient than a similar facility designed to code requirements.