Frank Gehry, a powerhouse in the fields of architecture and design (and one of our favourites on the furniture front), was roped in yet again, by social media mavens, Facebook, to add to their already imposing Menlo Park headquarters in California.
Dubbed ‘MPK 21′, the structure was designed and constructed in less than a year and a half. With the aim of being a “good neighbour” (Facebook attracted a lot of criticism from other residents from the outset of their build), the social media giant also aimed to get closer to nature with Gehry’s design including a ‘town square’ in the shape of a sheltered green space with 40-foot-tall redwood trees, while ‘the bowl’ has been conceived as amphitheatre-style courtyard.
According to designboom, Facebook says that the building was designed to promote teamwork and to allow staff work to their full potential. an open workspace encourages collaboration between teams, while quieter areas are provided for more focused work. running the length of the building, a single pathway connects five dining options, 15 art installations, and a 2,000-person event and meeting space with A/V technology. the workplace also encourages active engagement internally and externally with pedestrian walkways, access to various outdoor areas, visible stairways, and flexible workstations.
With the company’s building goals firmly set on eco-conscious development, Gehry had to take the building’s impact on the environment in terms of water, energy, and waste into careful consideration.
Designboom writes that “[a] reclaimed water system will save approximately 17 million gallons of water each year, while the roof includes 1.4 MW of photovoltaic solar panels — intended to generate nearly 2 million kWh of electricity annually. Additionally, bird-friendly glazing allows for clear views and natural daylighting, which reduces the need for artificial lighting during daylight hours. The building is also designed to achieve LEED platinum certification through the US green building council.”