The tech world moves fast. First built in the early 2000s, One Microsoft Court in Dublin could no longer meet the demands of Microsoft’s modern, more collaborative workforce. A full re-work of an outdated office building, our design opens up the reception to allow daylight to flood the space, while the completely reimagined atrium features an open staircase linking all three levels. Dedicated project and focus rooms on working floors are centralised to create a spine from which desks branch out to form neighbourhoods close to natural light. Our inspiration was the forest, with the atrium as a clearing with a ‘look out’ tower high above the landscape.
This wonderful quadruple height space perfectly encourages serendipitous encounters, the exchange of ideas and brings everyone together for sustenance, events and team building. New staircases connect the atrium to the upper floors and are expanded to include tiered seating for informal presentations and interactions. The atrium opens to the ‘garage’ an innovation lab- a space for people to experiment and play. Work happens everywhere and the building is set up to give choice for the employee.
Our inspiration came from the surrounding forest, exploring the idea of a pathway through the trees while incorporating biophilic design to enhance feelings of wellbeing. Private, social and recreation spaces are abundant throughout, with wellness facilities and dedicated project and focus rooms.
OMC is predominantly home to software developers who use fixed desks and it was fundamental that the new space should accommodate their ways of working in teams. The innovative 45 degree planning forms neighbourhoods for teams who have easy access to ‘spines’ of small cellular spaces. These workspaces are carefully shielded from the activity and hubbub of the atrium and set up for concentration and reflection.
Our challenge was to fully refurbish and upgrade facilities that were coming to the end of their life cycle and create a sense of a connected community centred around the atrium. The building itself posed many complex challenges including heat gain issues, extremely poor acoustics, and dark floor plates. The atrium and ground floor restaurant have been given new life by structurally remodelling the space and addition of a new vast feature staircase that links all three levels with bleacher seating.