Nissan North America’s decision to relocate their corporate operations from California to Tennessee created a once-in-a-lifetime chance to design a new, globally recognized corporate campus that would reestablish and enhance Nissan’s corporate culture and identity. Nissan wanted an efficient, flexible facility hosting a work environment that would put their employees first and fuse their brand and corporate culture.
GS&P provided full service design including workplace strategies, architecture, space planning, building information modeling, interior design, civil and structural engineering and environmental graphic design and wayfinding for the striking 460,000-square-foot building. The new corporate headquarters comprises 10 office floors and an underground level with two salons for special reviews of new models or prototype vehicles. An adjacent parking garage accommodates 1,135 vehicles and a 10,000-square-foot employee fitness center.
Prior to the start of programming, GS&P was engaged to prepare a workplace strategy that would allow Nissan to address the emerging issues of worker mobility, attraction and retention, brand and cultural alignment, diversity, and workplace agility. In the development of this strategy, transparency, connectivity and collaboration were identified as key components of the Nissan corporate culture. This emphasis inspired the idea of a community as a metaphor for development. Relatively large floor plates provide space for multiple “neighborhoods” of departments to be co-located. Common use functions such as major conference rooms, printing/copying, mail and break functions are grouped together in a “town center” on each floor. These hubs of activity generate numerous chance encounters among employees resulting in opportunities to exchange ideas quickly and efficiently outside the context of formal meetings. Informal meeting areas with chairs, whiteboards, etc. are provided to allow conversations to extend into ad hoc collaboration.
The Energy Star-labeled building also incorporates sustainable design elements in both interior and exterior environments. GS&P performed extensive energy modeling analysis on the building’s skin to fine tune the geometry with the goal of maximizing daylight harvesting, reducing the need for artificial lighting and minimizing the impact of solar heat gain. Other key design features that contribute to energy savings and environmental protection include sunshades to control solar heat gain; heating and cooling efficiency through an under-floor ventilation system; low-emissivity, high performance glass; light harvesting; a vegetative roof system; and a runoff water collection system.
GS&P’s design of the building enhances Nissan’s employee efficiency, supports the cross-functional nature of staff, and facilitates collaboration and creativity. The deliberate reduction of employee workspace standards to make way for the nearly 25% increase in formal and informal collaboration spaces has been very successful with an increased utilization by both employees and visitors. The building's energy performance rates in the top 25% of facilities nationwide. The facility is an example of how intelligent design solutions improve the overall user experience while creating operational efficiencies that positively impact the bottom-line.
Learn more about GS&P's projects at http://www.greshamsmith.com/