RDG Planning & Design partnered with the Scott Technology Center to refresh the interior environment and repurpose spaces in the building to open up collaborative common areas.
Scott Technology Center wanted its environment to reflect its occupants and userstalented entrepreneurs and start-ups and energetic students in search of collaborative spaces in which to engage and interact. Prior to this renovation, public spaces in the interior of the center were dated and reminiscent of a solemn, almost medical office feel of the 1980s. To update the corridors and common areas, a survey of building occupants was studied to assess the vision and desires of the occupants. RDG's designers worked to improve lighting conditions, refresh finishes, incorporate collaborative furniture plans, improve wayfinding and design an environmental graphics package to support the image and brand of the facility. The project created bright, open areas for users to meet up, work together and socialize outside of typical offices, classrooms, and conference rooms.
Creating a Branded Environment
Our team focused the building user’s common connection to technology and sharing conceptually the purpose of the center itself. The design team took a strategic role in helping to document the identity of the center because while the purpose, mission, and programs were carefully structured, the identity and culture of the center were not. Interviews were conducted of a cross-section of the center’s user groups to uncover the story of the center that would then drive the experiential graphics and interior renovation.
The wall graphics are composed of concepts true to both the center’s purpose and building users: computer hardware, networking (social and computer), and logic processes. Additional graphics of energetic movement are added to central circulation points to enliven the areas. Recognizing the human connection to technology is achieved most frequently through the screens of our devices, designers utilized a variety of microscopic RGB sub-pixel geometry to derive patterns for the wall graphics. From a distance, each wall graphic reveals an angular composition and an up-close view reveals pixel patterns from a wide variety of electronic device technology such as LCD, OLED, AMOLED, and a throwback to CRT televisions. By building each graphic from much smaller parts, the graphics are rendered in the same way an image appears on a device screen. And perhaps gives people something to geek out about if they are in the know.
The design team was charged with refreshing the interiors with as little construction as possible. Smaller office suites were strategically removed from leasable space to create open collaborative spaces. A wayfinding plan was implemented to solve navigation problems and public spaces were given unique names to establish each area as a destination. Bright-colored painted angles were added to distinguish one end of a corridor from the next and they interact with the carpet pattern to create a splash of color and movement in the flooring. Environmental graphics were strategically placed to distinguish one corridor from the next and install visual interest along long repetitive corridors.
This wayfinding program was developed to aid occupants first in orientating themselves to where they are in the building, and second to give clear direction at decision points along the long corridors.
Before the renovation of the building’s corridors and public spaces, the interior of this multi-tenant technology center was monotonous and solemn. Navigating the corridors was confusing due to the zig-zag hallways and every decision point being nearly identical in paint, carpet, and generic artwork. Frequent problems with visitors exiting the back of the building indicated a major problem with the design of entrance/exit points and the distinct lack of signage.
This wayfinding program was developed in tandem with the program of wall graphics where elements of signage or graphics were strategically placed to distinguish each decision point from the last. A minimal number of directional panels were placed at the vertical circulation points and are intentionally shaped to embrace the unique geometry of the building. Angular blade signs at each suite entrance increase the visibility of suite numbers down the lengthy distance of the corridors and confirm for the occupant that they are headed in the correct direction. Special attention was given to placemaking by naming each public collaboration space.