AIA Best Commercial Project - Franklin Architects
Situated within walking distance of the historic Chattanooga Choo-Choo, the client chose their company headquarters in an eclectic urban environment as a mechanism for drawing and retaining talent in the burgeoning knowledge-based economy of Chattanooga, TN. The client’s goals were to create a bright, open-office environment to foster collaboration and creativity. Enclosed private management offices and numerous break-out spaces throughout generate a spatial organization of clustered work groups, the definition of which, is created by a trio of repurposed shipping containers. Selective demolition of the existing structure left only the load bearing masonry walls and steel trusses which were painstakingly cleaned, repaired, and restored. A new outer shell of efficient, prefinished, insulated metal panels was applied for both exterior cladding and interior finish. A large opening was punched into the existing building on the south façade to serve as a new front door. Designed to protect the space from the intense direct sunlight during summer months, the entry allows light deep into the building to passively warm the concrete slab in the winter, helping to conserve energy. A window wall on the north façade gathers indirect light year-round while white walls and reflective floor finishes keep the need for lighting to a minimum during primary work hours and helps to keep the space lively and energetic. The cluster of containers which supports the breakroom and a large conference area was used to also support the mezzanine which serves as a secondary work space and ‘café’ for the employees.