Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center
Information Technology Services
The Wake One EPIC / Project Team Space was an atypical project from the design solution standpoint. The fully built-out, 20,000 gross square feet, unoccupied class “B” third floor space presented specific challenges to the program and budget. The building was constructed in the early 1970’s. HVAC, energy conservation systems, electrical and technology infrastructure were insufficient for a technology-based tenant. Parking and access to the building were acceptable and required no modifications.
Programming requirements dictated a class “A” space for 120 occupants, a variety of conference rooms with audio-visual connectivity, a server room with uninterrupted power source (UPS), increased technology infrastructure capabilities, security systems, and a VoIP telephone system. Lease length and terms added specific schedule and budgeting pressure along with an undetermined timeframe that the primary occupant would require use of the space. The requested project schedule was under six months from programming to occupancy including all pre-planning, programming, approvals, budgeting, design, construction and occupation.
The customer sought to provide their teams with a space that supported the work demands, in business functions and in areas of rest. Operations could continue at all hours of the night and day and the space needed to visibly promote productivity and creativeness. The design team’s goal was to maximize day lighting and provide comfortable interior lighting regardless of time of day. Built offices and support spaces were placed around the core of the space, so all workstations were then able to enjoy exterior views and lighting. Team meeting areas were placed along the exterior windows. Offices, print support areas, and conference and training room functions were pushed to the core not only providing audible and visual privacy for these spaces but also providing easy access for all open work environments, pulling staff into a common path for interactions. Technology upgrades in terms of fiber optics, cabling, auxiliary cooling, and UPS systems were deployed from a central location within the space to reduce costs. HVAC and electrical systems also centrally located were evaluated and identified as useable and replaced or redeployed as needed to reduce both initial and life cycle costs.
It became evident during programming that the interior design solution would need to support not only the flexibility requirement due to the unknown future use of the space, but also the team oriented style of a software development business operation. A furniture solution for open work environments with various opportunities for teamwork was used rather than a built solution. Efficient space planning limited the constructed walls required to fulfill the program which in turn increased space utilization, redeployment flexibility, cost saving depreciation advantages, and presented reductions in initial construction cost, schedule improvements and ultimately a lower project cost. Placing open work areas along the exterior windows allows day lighting to penetrate deep into the interior of building reducing energy costs and increasing connectivity to the outdoors.
The customer wanted to create an attractive space for their internal clients and visiting contractors to visit and one in which their staff could feel comfortable. T2pm’s design concept was to build off the technology-based business functions planned for the space, using a color palette that gives a sense of high-energy, fast-pace, and somewhat uncommon. Bright blue and green were selected as accents against and calming base of tan and chocolate. Simple yet visually pleasing acoustical ceiling “clouds” accented team areas and break area. The large break area extends from core to exterior window, adjacent to the main entrance for casual meetings and easily accessed by all staff.