amplify

A Diary of Workplace Thought Leadership

Our approach to workplace interiors is informed, inspired, anchored in what people and organizations need most. These design resources capture where we are today.

SPARKLE

What lights us up.

We find inspiration everywhere—lifestyle trends, art, other people’s products, design culture, and design thinking.


Celebrating Earth Day

April 22, 2021

Materials that make an impact

Our Workplace Design Team is highlighting our integration of salvaged products and materials to celebrate Earth Day! We intentionally source and specify materials made with recycled content and naturally renewable resources in our projects. Beyond these materials there’s an abundant opportunity for reusing products that have already been manufactured, this keeps new items out of the landfill and is less energy-intensive than reforming old into new.

Salvaged goods are not always an obvious choice. A client, in financial services, was consolidating their office space in Seattle, which meant they had a lot of surplus furniture in great condition. The design team took inventory of the existing furniture and strategically incorporated over 140 pieces of furniture throughout multiple floors of the office space. This included conference chairs, task chairs, lounge furniture, and break room furniture. All of the unused furniture was donated to Green Standards to be resold or recycled. This project achieved its LEED certification in 2019!

Incorporating salvaged or unconventional materials in tenant improvement projects with fast schedules and tight budgets is the challenge we are looking for! For a project with Los Angeles Sanitation, we brought the concept of recycling into the design. Our designer researched recycled materials and discovered an artist who uses metal cans to create artwork. To exhibit this artwork, the designer, in collaboration with a casework fabricator, created a decorative panel to be installed into the face of the reception desk. A quote from the artist was included in the bid documents to make pricing by the contractor a breeze. Thoughtful planning and smart design allowed us to seamlessly incorporate a design element that reflected the client’s values. This was a success for all.

At 38 Davis, our firm’s office in Portland, we concepted our design to reflect our values. Sustainability and environmental stewardship are at our core. This is demonstrated by incorporating salvaged wood, from Pioneer Millworks. The salvaged wood material was applied in multiple locations – from ceiling clouds and wall cladding in the conference rooms to rolling benches and booth seating backs in our entry area. The selected wood contrasts the mass-timber construction, while maintaining the warmth and texture only wood can bring. The final project achieved LEED v4 Gold.

AM Design Week 2020

September 23, 2020

In conjunction with Seattle Design Festival: About Time.

For Seattle Design Festival’s 10th anniversary in August, 2020, our Portland, Seattle, and San Francisco offices celebrated Design Week virtually. Over five days, we explored what drew us to design, the realties of this present time, and the many ways our neighborhoods and cities are changing. We shared over 400 photos, 500 posts, and 1,829 emojis. At time when connecting with people isn’t easy, Design Week gave us a chance to see the world through each other’s eyes.

Here’s a tiny sample of what we shared.

FUTURECAST

Insights based in real-world research.

Discover our research-supported innovations through case studies, code updates, market reports, white papers, and more.


June 25, 2021

What will it take to revive central business districts across the US? What role will your workplace play in this recovery?  What makes a community resilient, balanced, and livable and what role do workplaces play in this equation? What would it look like if your office was more integrated into the community?

As the pandemic loosens its grip and businesses prepare to return to the office, we believe there is an opportunity for workplaces to imagine a better future and play a larger role in reviving and restoring our communities. We surveyed industry partners, urban planners, end users, and market experts to get their take on the trends and opportunities they see for a revitalized urban core.

Based on our research, the notions of civic pride, symbiotic communities, and human centered design are fundamental to re-imaging the relationship between workplaces and their surrounding communities. Over the next few days, we will explore each of these principles and unpack what they mean for workplace design.


June 28, 2021

What is the responsibility of an organization or building owner toward the larger community in which they inhabit? Studies show that the long-term implications of the work-from-home trend could have an unintended adverse impact on downtown business districts, commercial real estate, and local businesses. The situation demands new and innovative thinking to ensure our cities remain vibrant.

We believe that in order to rebuild and restore connection and engagement between workplaces and the surrounding community, employers and community leaders need to form partnerships rooted in shared values and civic pride. Workplaces can play a critical role in the vibrancy of our communities and must rise to the challenge of being a strategic partner with local jurisdictions and community organizations.

What is the role of design in all of this? The answer lies in connectivity. Our design solutions encourage connection between the building and the surrounding neighborhood. For example, active and engaging ground floors that provide space for community programming, wellness services, or experiential retail environments serve as vibrant and vital assets that benefit the broader community. By engaging multiple and diverse stakeholders, including the local community as co-creators in their design solutions, designers and their clients play a major role in the revitalization of urban centers.

To learn more about how you can get involved and flex your civic pride, check out the advocacy work of the Downtown Portland Clean and Safe, the Seattle Downtown Business Association, and the Downtown Los Angeles Business Improvement Districts.


June 30, 2021

Before the pandemic, it was common for businesses and office workers to have an insulated experience within the community in which they worked. There was a binary relationship between work and home. Your real community was where you lived. Your work community barely registered beyond the front door of your office. When offices emptied out last March, leaving central business districts empty and local retail and restaurants on life support, the limitations and, frankly, harm, of this or compartmentalization was suddenly brought to light.   

 

Resilient communities are predicated on a collaborative relationship between businesses, workers, retail, and civic groups. Now, as workers slowly trickle back to the office, we must use this opportunity to re-imagine a more collaborative relationship between workers, businesses, and government within the blocks, cities, and districts in which they call home. Workplaces and their surrounding communities need to be agile, resilient, and inclusive in order to thrive in the future. To get there, employers and community leaders must recognize the interdependence of workplaces and their communities. As workplace designers, we strengthen communities when our design solutions are informed by the symbiotic relationship between workplaces, retail, services, and housing.    

So, what are we doing today to address this? We are actively engaged with our workplace clients to elevate the discussion around their, as well as our own, engagement with the surrounding community. Public-private partnerships, together with design solutions that promote inclusivity, can enhance the quality of life, improve safety, and create equitable opportunities that are critical in building resilient communities.  


July 2, 2021

As designers, we are redefining what sustainability means by placing the human experience at the center of design solutions. In order to fully address the diversity of the human experience, equity and inclusion must be the foundation of sustainable design to create holistic communities and transformative workplaces. A truly sustainable workplace is built to anticipate and meet human needs, fostering a collegial and welcoming environment for all, where people can focus and think as easily as they can collaborate, learn, and grow. At its core, sustainable design is empathic, equitable, and human-centered.

What does this mean from a design perspective? Small design decisions say a lot, from minor adjustments to accommodate all body types and abilities, to the inclusion of private spaces for health and wellness activities. We view spaces through the eyes of all people who will inhabit and interact with them, incorporating the best practices of universal design.

We are committed to educating and challenging ourselves to actively design for social equity. As part of this commitment, we have signed the Call-to-Action Pledge with NOMA NW to advocate for equity and diversity within our profession. We have also partnered with The Diversity Movement  to help us build & strengthen our diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) strategy and insure it is woven into the fabric of our work. Truly sustainable design cannot be achieved unless it begins with a human centered approach that prioritizes equitable opportunities for all. 


re-connect

October 27, 2020

Embracing a Changing Workplace

What is the purpose of the office now? And in the future? To answer these questions, we surveyed nearly 400 people from various industries and across different generations. We analyzed the data and the many thoughtful write-in responses and discovered four distinct themes.

Download re-connect now.


re-set

September 21, 2020

Resiliency in the Workplace

We surveyed 300+ people about returning to the office, and their responses were loud and clear. A holistic, employee-centered approach is essential to any reentry strategy. Following our survey findings, we’ve developed three design insights that can ensure a healthy future for the workplace: Invest in wellbeing. Redefine connection. Fortify trust.

Download re-set now.


re-imagine

September 21, 2020

Adapting Today

Our own reentry strategy for 38 Davis, Ankrom Moisan's Portland headquarters, puts our design insights into practice. Discover how we redesigned for entering our workplace, using restrooms and gym amenities, and managing the building.

Download re-imagine now.


re-entry

September 21, 2020

Adapting Together

Ankrom Moisan has spent decades designing healthy, empowering workplaces. Working quickly and cost-effectively, we design and implement strategies that help people feel safe about reentering the workplace during uncertain times—and help our clients safely transition to their new workplace reality.

Download re-entry now.


re-new

September 21, 2020

Post-Pandemic Design Solutions

Our wellness solutions are realistic and evidence-based. By investigating how the coronavirus affects workplace design, setting clear outcomes, analyzing conditions, and matching our recommendations to your situation, we design workplace wellness strategies that align with your company's culture—and that can succeed.

Download re-new now.

COLLABORATORY

The way we roll.

Our alchemy is collaborative design, expressed through behind-the-scenes processes and shared knowledge.


The New Suburban Office

October 8, 2020

Wellness with a Competitive Edge

Natural ventilation and access to fresh air are priorities for post-pandemic office spaces. With people’s growing interest in shorter commutes, suburban office parks are becoming more popular.

Our latest non-urban office design reimagines a typical campus, including amenities with metropolitan flair that blur the lines between indoor and outdoor lounge spaces. This facility updates an indoor cantina break area with a lounge and gaming table, opening to an exterior space via a dramatic, overhead pivoting glass door.

Outside are a tiered seating area called “The Skybox,” private seating nooks, lounge seating around a fire pit, and a barbecue area. We preserved a mature spruce tree, protecting its roots by a raised boardwalk. Coordinating palettes and eclectic furniture and accessory choices unify the indoor and outdoor spaces. These new amenities address tenants’ post-pandemic concerns and give the owner a unique selling point for the building.

THINK CLUB

The rigor behind the magic.

How we think is who we are. Get to know us here.


Evolution of Office Amenities Q&A

October 8, 2020

A Special Report from Colliers International

COVID-19’s influence on the future of office space is one of the real estate industry’s million-dollar questions today. With many employees planning to work from home into 2021, is the traditional office environment outdated?

This question cuts to the heart of what we do, so we found a lot of insight (and encouragement) from this Colliers International report.

After interviewing experts in office leasing, tenant representation, workplace strategy, and more, Colliers International believes that offices continue to play an important role in how we conceptualize work. Read their report to learn about:

  • The effects of the work-from-home experiment
  • What changes can help make a return to the office more viable
  • How amenities can evolve to attract workers back to the office

Click HERE to view the Colliers International report.