Contact Us

Creative Office Is King


JC Anderson has a cool crib and builds cool cribs, so we knew we needed its president, Mike Yazbec, at Bisnow’s Chicago Creative Office Summit on Jan. 30. From a construction perspective, he’s seeing dollars/SF reallocated as companies build out more collaborative workspaces (goodbye, drywall), with more money being alloted to technology (wireless, cabling) and amenities (cafes, pool tables, etc). Computer rooms are also a thing of the past, now that companies don’t need to keep data storage in their expensive downtown real estate. They might have a technology closet, he says, which connects to their main data storage off in somewhere like South Dakota. (We wonder where South Dakotans keep their data.)


Here’s JC’s in-office basketball court for proof of creative office cred (it also just finished a cool open-plan space for Retail Properties of America in Oak Brook). “We’re trying to embrace the trend and give people the flexibility to blow off a little steam," Mike says. And he doesn’t see this wave slowing. It’s a more effective use of space now that technology has enabled people to work in nontraditional environments, but you can never replace face-to-face connectivity, he adds. The potential challenge lies with HR: How do you manage more scattered employees and keep them engaged in the company culture and values? (Might we suggest online NBA Jam tournaments.)