Cool Office Space: Acentech, Cambridge
Acentech had the same office layout with private offices and large, high-walled cubicles for 15 years, and there was trepidation—from both a workspace and an acoustical standpoint—to change the office environment. To make it successful, Cambridge-based Acentech got the entire staff involved in designing its new space.
Everyone had a voice in workspace location, based on a personal preference for privacy: some have private offices, some are in more clustered work areas, and some are in more spaced-out areas—but all office spaces are about the same size. The big takeaway about workspace design trends? Office design is a compromise, no matter who’s working there. Here are employees celebrating the new light-filled open plan office.
Acentech renovated “in-place” with a phased schedule and used available swing space. Collaborating with Austin Architects, the design scrapped the tall cubical walls but maintained relatively high partitions between workspaces by using glass for the top 13 inches of the office partition, which blocks sound but allows light through.
Acentech’s own consultants designed the acoustical conditions (which had to be heavily considered with the new layout) and state-of-the-art audiovisual technology in the new conference rooms.