Creative Office Revolution
Want to get a jump-start on upcoming deals? Meet the major San Diego players at one of our upcoming events!
Employers are clamoring for space that facilitates creativity. (Might we suggest an entire conference room made of Legos?) That's why we're excited for our panel of experts to discuss what does and doesn’t work, when it comes to creative office at Bisnow’s San Diego Creative Office Summit on Dec. 16 at 8am.
CBRE San Diego regional managing director Paul Komadina, who will be a speaker at the event, tells us that tenants looking for the new generation of office space are looking for space that follows three key principles. First, spaces that reflect the company’s culture. Second, spaces that utilize the latest technology for individual work, group collaboration and presentations. Third, spaces designed to give employees a variety of space types (open office, private rooms, small conference rooms) for collaboration based on the type of work employees are doing at any given time.
Paul showed us around CBRE's Downtown office space, which is located in the same building as Fit Athletic Club, and in the happening East Village neighborhood offering restaurants and brew pubs--spots for Millennials (and fun-loving Baby Boomers) to take a break from the office. CBRE's office also has a deck with a view of Petco Park. Make that a closeup view, so close that you could watch a game or even toss a ball from the deck into the outfield. (Instead, we had a beer on the deck with Paul last Friday afternoon.) The office space is designed to be a place both to work and relax, Paul says. The are no assigned desks, and each work area is set up so that employees can work sitting or standing.
Hughes Marino EVP David Marino (right, snapped with CEO Jason Hughes), who's also speaking at the event, tells us that office space used to be about organizational hierarchy: more about stature and image than productivity, or as a vehicle for creating corporate culture. "Corporate culture has now flattened, and we're seeing only vice presidents and above with offices, and those offices are smaller than ever," David tells us. Companies are now emphasizing more amenities for all employees, including larger and more open lunch and break areas, often placed in the most premium view space in the building so that everyone benefits, and more conference rooms and areas for spontaneous collaboration.
David says that existing buildings with spaces built out 20 or more years ago feature tenant improvements now coming to the end of their useful life. Building owners are tearing back to the raw structure of the building, which generally exposes steel, concrete, and in some cases brick. (Pictured: Bumble Bee Foods office, a Hughes Marino project.) “They’re then bringing in all the lighting, air-conditioning systems and ducting, electrical conduit, telecommunications and network cabling all in an exposed setting,” he says. "They're taking advantage of natural light by not building many offices." Exterior walls with natural light that might've been used to build 10 private offices now instead benefit the 50 to 60 people who work collaboratively in an open office environment.
Burger Construction’s AJ Casteel tells us that Burger, founded by president Jack Burger, used recycled shipping containers and other raw materials, like crane rigging for a zip line, to customize the company’s office (pictured), which he says has been deemed "industrial chic" by some of the company's architecture and design friends. Natural lighting, plants and a system of open ventilation are key features.
Creative office's main focus is to build something “distinctive to your company,” AJ explains. 'The idea of ‘creative office’ is a reaction to the shift in how we conduct ourselves in the workplace." Also, the workday has been extended to the point that people are spending more time in the office than at home, so amenities like gyms and cafes are necessary to keep and attract tenants, AJ adds. The physical office has become a deciding factor for recruits choosing between similar job offers, and employer and employees alike want the best (most creative) one. Sign up here for our creative office event.