A healthy and productive workspace
Designed by award winning German architectural firm, Behnisch Architekten, Genzyme Center is the corporate headquarters for one of the world’s leading biotechnology companies. Incorporating offices, a cafeteria, a library, gardens, training rooms, a conference center and public retail space, the 350,000 ft2 building was developed from the inside out, with the aim of providing a healthy and productive workspace.
The client wanted to achieve Platinum and required an environmentally friendly office space that enriches the health and productivity of employees. Working closely with the client, the project team balanced aesthetics, cost, constructability, and reliability to create an environmentally responsible corporate headquarters.
A variety of strategies have been incorporated into the design to enhance the efficiency of the center. The building envelope is a high-performance curtainwall with operable windows on all 12 floors. More than 32% of the exterior envelope is a ventilated double-facade that blocks solar gains in summer and captures solar gains in the winter. Steam from a nearby power plant is used for central heating and cooling and the building’s central atrium acts as a huge return air duct and light shaft. Fresh air moves into the atrium and out through exhaust fans near the skylight. Natural light from the fully glazed facade and atrium (brought in by solar-tracking mirrors above the skylight) reflects deep into the building, significantly reducing the need for artificial light sources
According to the employee post occupancy evaluation the improved staff productivity due to the air quality and natural light had an estimated increase of $5 million in annual value. Additionally, the total “green cost” of the facility of about $22 million had a five year payback period. Henri A. Termeer, Genzyme Chairman and Chief Executive Officer said, ‘Genzyme Center has surpassed our expectations in many ways, and we are incredibly pleased with the positive impact it has had both on our employees and on the larger community.’
Services and approach
When we integrate our specialist teams around an approach, the benefits to the client multiply