ZGF has designed more than 7,000,000 SF of office space for Microsoft over the past 25 years, including new campuses and buildings and significant renovations to existing buildings as their workplace environment has evolved from closed office to open plan. For many years a hallmark of the company had been the promise of a private office to prospective and current employees. When the shift occurred in high tech and creative office to an open plan workplace to increase collaboration and innovation, ZGF participated in the research and exploration of space strategies that addressed how work styles have evolved, how the multi-generational workforce is functioning, and what adjustments need to be made to meet individual and team needs as well as overall Microsoft business performance goals. Fifteen years later, ZGF has applied the new and evolving workplace standards to more than a million square feet which includes open plan offices organized into team-based neighborhoods supported by meeting rooms, phone rooms and quiet rooms that support individual heads-down work.  Common gathering spaces throughout buildings that foster cross-team and cross-disciplinary collaboration include garages for large gathering and recreation, hubs which provide food and drink, nodes with comfortable furniture that provide impromptu gathering spaces, lounges and relaxation spaces, and a signature lobby and central feature stair.  Beyond the workplace design goals include creating a pedestrian-oriented campus with buildings that reflect a high-quality environment and outdoor amenities consistent with the company’s culture and a scale sensitive to the surrounding neighborhoods.

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