Nowadays, the word factory conjures up images of big and dark voids full of machinery that is, and the workers within are, much removed from delight and the world around it. Not that it needs to be that way! Not in the least. Here’s one that accomplishes everything needed within (ie, making stuff) while being mighty fine for both the workers within and its neighbors and passers-by.
While in plan the building is in a very typical (and straight-edged) L-shaped configuration, with its vertically zig-zagging walls you’d never guess it, helped even further along by the great texture striations that embellish the protruding concrete wedges. All around, the ground rises up to follow and meet these chiseled shapes. Similarly, up top, the roof tips down to reveal a planted surface, studded with skylights. Besides the great energy and maintenance benefits of the roof (coupled with the insulated thermal mass of the concrete walls), it helps the building blend into the nearby pine forest, especially for those peering out of the window as their plane departs from the nearby airport.
Inside the spaces are large and continuous, befitting its manufacturing purpose, broken up by inviting atriums that work double time to bring light deep into the interior. Multiple paths, gardens, and more let the atriums be amazing spaces to view and use for the surrounding offices. (Also… let us simply marvel at the horse-lamp and the pig-table…)
Great stuff and a sweet reminder that good design that honours us as people is possible no matter what type of building.