Adobe asked Valerio Dewalt Train Associates to reinvent the workplace strategy and customer interface spaces at its global headquarters in San Jose. The watchword is interaction. The new customer experience center (CEC) on the first and second floors immerses clients in the company’s latest digital offerings with interactive displays in a warm, comfortable environment modeled after a home or loft.
The design team overhauled a typical office floor, eliminating most private offices in favor of open plan neighborhoods to facilitate collaboration; the design is being rolled out across Adobe offices worldwide. This project received a LEED Platinum rating.
Executives also got a new open floor plan, with amenities such as conference and “war” rooms, touchdown areas for board members, and social and entertaining areas available to everyone on campus, further encouraging everyone to rub shoulders and share ideas.
+ Design statement from Valerio Dewalt Train Associates
One of the world’s largest software companies, Adobe had occupied its San Jose headquarters since 1996. The company asked Valerio Dewalt Train Associates to reinvent the workplace strategy and customer interface spaces for the headquarters campus.
The new 15,000-square-foot customer experience center on the first and second floors is a state-of-the-art interactive briefing center where Adobe’s executive and corporate sales team can immerse clients in the company’s latest digital products and solutions. The space includes three briefing areas, interactive digital displays, and support areas for entertaining clients. In a shift from the previous space’s corporate, impersonal feel, the design team worked with the client to create a more personal environment, reminiscent of a home or loft. Wood floors and furnishings add a warm tone. Comfortable chairs and sofas are grouped to create a range of meeting areas. The new executive dining area receives extensive natural light.
To meet the needs of Adobe’s rapidly evolving workforce, the design team completely overhauled the west tower’s 25,000-square-foot 12th floor, known as W12, with a floor plan that encourages flexibility and collaboration. Previously, the space consisted of 80 private offices for Adobe engineers and administrative staff; now it has only 14 private offices, complemented with an open plan configuration of low-partitioned stationary desks in small neighborhoods supported by touchdown spaces, a wide variety of open and enclosed collaborative spaces, a game room, and a kitchenette with booth seating. Employee surveys and extensive benchmarking informed strategies for supporting mobile workers. The variety of spaces supports the diverse requirements of globally distributed business units that are in constant communication.
The existing floor had also lacked identity. New environmental graphics, including Adobe-branded graphics and team pin-up boards, reinforce collaboration and communicate the corporate brand throughout the office. W12 is serving as a pilot project for a new workplace standard currently being rolled out across Adobe’s office spaces around the globe.
The final piece of the campus’s reinvention involved creating a new open floor plan for the executive team along with a new board room and associated support amenities. Leading by example, the executive team members moved out of their offices to an open floor plan that closely resembles the typical open floor. Open workstations, in addition to dedicated conference rooms, support the work of the executives, enhancing communication among previously isolated teams.
A new communicating stair at the top of the east tower extends the executive floor to the corporate amenities level, where the new executive board room is located. These amenities include conference and “war” rooms, touchdown areas for board members, and social and entertaining areas open to the entire campus population.
The project followed the highest standards of sustainable and high-efficiency design, and in the case of W12, achieved LEED Platinum certification. Sustainable strategies include low-flow plumbing fixtures, a high-efficiency HVAC system, high-efficiency lighting fixtures equipped with daylight sensors and occupancy sensors, and use of materials with recycled content and low- to no-VOC emissions.
+ FACT SHEET
Name of Project: Adobe Global Headquarters – Renovation
Location (city, state; country): San Jose CA
Total floor area (square feet): Total Campus 1,000,000 SF
Number of floors: 3 Towers, 16/18 Floors
Average floor size (square feet): 25,000 SF
Cost/square foot (USD): Not Available
Photographer: David Wakely
+ PROJECT TEAM
Client: Adobe Systems Inc.
Architect: Valerio Dewalt Train Associates
Louis Ray – Principal in Charge
Antonio Caliz – Sr. Associate Design Director
Rebecca Speich, Elizabeth Utley, Matt Gamache – Project Architects
Audrey Bauer, Kate Tans – Staff Architects
Lacey Engelke, Stephen Killion – Environmental Graphics
Contractor: DEVCON Construction, BCCI
Lighting: Inga Birkenstock – Birkenstock Lighting Design
Engineering: Design/Build – Cupertino Electric, ACCO
Graphics: Design by Integrated Media at Valerio Dewalt Train Associates. Production and Installation Splash Events
Other: Smart Floor Technology – IBS Integrated Building Solutions
Wallcoverings: OFFECCT Panels, Luna Fabrics – Acoustical Panels
Paint: Kelly Moore
Dry wall: USG
Hard flooring: Nydree Wood Flooring
Carpet/carpet tile: Interface Flooring
Interior lighting (manufacturers and dealers)
Recessed lighting: Lightolier, Axis, Neoray
Task lighting: Humanscale
Fluorescent/industrial: Reused existing
Floor/table lamps: Flos, Miria
Pendants/chandeliers: 3Form Lighting, Eurofase
Other decorative: Focal Point
Hardware: Reused Existing
Door: Reused Existing
Decorative glass panels/partitions: Reused Existing
Seating (manufacturers and dealers)
Workstation/task seating: Herman Miller Aeron – Pivot Interiors
Workstations (manufacturers and dealers): Herman Miller Canvas – Pivot
Conference seating: Humanscale Liberty – Herman Miller Setu – Pivot Interiors
Lounge/reception seating: Herman Miller, Bernhardt Design, Coalesse, Davis, Steelcase – Pivot Interiors, One Workplace
Cafeteria/dining seating: Bernhardt Design – Pivot Interiors
Upholstery (fabric manufacturers): Maharam, DesignTex, Luna
Tables (manufacturers and dealers)
Conference: Custom by Creative Wood
Cafeteria/dining: Custom by Creative Wood, Herman Miller Eames
Reception desk: Custom
Side tables: Herman Miller Eames & Swoop, Bernhardt Area, Cumberland Venlo, Coalesse CG_1 & Circa – Pivot Interiors & One Work Place
Other tables: Herman Miller Everywhere table, Steelcase FlexFrame Northwoods table – Pivot Interiors & One Work Place
Storage systems (manufacturers and dealers)
Files: Herman Miller – Pivot Interiors
Shelving: Custom Shelving
Architectural/custom woodworking: Commercial Casework, Inc., MissionBell Manufacturing, Inc.
Signage (fabricator): Splash Events
Plumbing fixtures/fittings (manufacturers): Elkay, Axor, Kohler
+ All images courtesy Valerio Dewalt Train Associates \ photo by David Wakely