Contemporary Biophilic Design
Dublin has been the centre for growth for a number of companies and it has etched itself as the hub for innovation. It is no surprise that global organisations like Air BnB, Google, Apple and now even Microsoft have decided to make it their command centre.
Microsoft’s new office has taken the concept of Biophilia and thought outside the box with the designs based around the concept of an island complete with a digital waterfall cascading through the atrium. At Axis House we are always interested whenever good office design is in the hot seat, especially when good Biophilic Design has been incorporated!
Gensler and RKD Architects designed the 28,000-square-metre campus around the idea of an island with different parts of the office corresponding to different topographies and their associated functions. An interactive display runs down several levels mimicking a waterfall cascading down a mountainside. This waterfall feeds into a ‘Lake’ of colour-changing tiles surrounded by grey flooring and black benches arranged in a rock like formation around the edges. The skylight at the top of the atrium allows light to reach the centre of office, with windows and galleries and arranged around the perimeters of the upper level providing views across different parts of the office.
Our recent whitepaper on this subject matter highlights the advantages of using biophilic design in a workplace. Biophilic design is about focusing the design around the elements of the natural world which improve human health and productivity. Modelling an office after an island certainly ticks that box! Whether it be through a water fountain or a natural flow of water or a digital waterfall, this presence of water ignites our senses. It has also been associated with reducing stress levels, lower heart rate and blood pressure and an increased feeling of tranquillity.
For Microsoft taking the concept of Biophilic Design may not have been the go-to choice but with the design philosophy of using nature as inspiration the end result certainly became that way, and what a great result it is!
Why not download our whitepaper on Biophilic Design to learn more about the benefits and how employers can implement this concept in their offices.