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November 19, 2014

Howard S. Wright's new offices: not your typical 9-5 spread

Photos courtesy of Howard S. Wright [enlarge]
This multi-functional ‘core’ can handle large gatherings.

The conference room table can rise to accommodate standing meetings.

Employees can relax by playing Xbox games.

General contractor Howard S. Wright recently moved its headquarters into Queen Anne Station, a building at 415 First Ave. N., near KeyArena.

“This is the beginning of an exciting new chapter for our people,” said HSW division President Dan Peyovich in a release. “If I choose only one word to describe our new home it is connection. Our space promotes connection to the environment, community, wellness, our history, and our vision for the future. It embodies our culture where our people are both challenged and supported.”

Designed by Gensler, the 18,800-square-foot office has 87 workstations with room to expand and a multi-functional “core” that can handle large gatherings. All of the workstations have outdoor views and a treadmill workstation can be found in one of the “focus rooms” where private conversations are held.

The conference room has a table designed by a local artist that can rise to standing heights.

The company is also promoting “walking meetings” with preset routes outside the building designed for different meeting durations.

Employees can get a quick workout, play pingpong or Xbox, or take in a movie in the multifunction “wellness” room. They can breathe fresh air on the rooftop deck while taking in views of the city, Elliott Bay and the nearby Space Needle, which HSW built more than 50 years ago.

“Our goal from the start was to find and create a space that inspires collaboration, thought leadership, and innovation by incorporating the things that are most important to our employees including family, technology, community, and the outdoors,” Peyovich said. “Our people love to sail, climb, and ride so they became the foundation of our program, as reflected in our conference room names. We enjoy eating healthy and can prepare a fresh meal on the gas range or rooftop barbecue, or make a smoothie in the Vitamix.”

In addition to building out its own space, Howard S. Wright was in charge of environmental graphics. Other team members were MacDonald-Miller (mechanical design-build), Titan Electric (electrical design-build), DCI Engineers (structural), Sparling (acoustical) and LightWire (lighting design).

Howard S. Wright was bought by Balfour Beatty in 2011. HSW also has offices in Portland.

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