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ULI Atlanta Awards 2019 Winner for Excellence in Adaptive Reuse/Repurposing: Interface Headquarters at 16th Station

Atlanta Business Chronicle

Excellence in Adaptive Reuse/Repurposing: Interface Headquarters

Angelina Giro, Interface’s creative studio director, answered questions about the project.

Describe your project. The building was partially deconstructed and over 90% of the interior and exterior materials were diverted or recycled. What remained was a classic concrete structure with the potential of open, day-lit spaces to encourage creativity and collaboration. Building on Interface’s leadership in sustainability, this design looked to nature for inspiration. It incorporates biophilic design as a key focus throughout, ensuring that occupants have a clear connection to the natural world, through the conceptual metaphors of a Cave, a Forest and a Bluff. Sited on a natural rocky ridge in the city, the lowest “Cave” levels house the refurbished parking garage, provide electric-vehicle charging and bicycle storage, and showcase a 15,000-gallon rainwater cistern. The “Forest” comprises the three floors of existing office structure. The “Bluff” consists of the new penthouse featuring the learning center, roof terrace and green roof. The most striking feature of Interface’s new headquarters is its skin: a high-performance curtainwall with a semi‐transparent polyester sheath depicting a life‐sized forest.

What would it mean to your organization to be recognized with the ULI Award? Designing our headquarters took an enormous amount of time and collaboration with an amazing team of experts. This award would be a testament to everyone’s hard work and Interface’s contribution to the community.

What were some of the challenges with this project? Rachel Martin with JLL said, “Interface’s decision to “go big” and pursue WELL and LEED v4 Platinum created some unique challenges, because WELL and v4 LEED were so new at the time. We were all trying to figure out how it would all work together. With a zero lot line and not enough room or direct sunlight for renewable energy, Interface decided to make a big focus on water-use reduction, installing a 15,000 gallon rainwater collection system used for flush fixtures.”

Who are some partners you have worked with? Interface, Suntech Tinting Inc., Perkins+Will, JLL