NAIOP Inaugural Office Building of the Future Design Competition Focuses on the Evolution of the Modern Workplace

Winners to Present Innovative Concept Plans at Development ’12: The Annual Meeting for Commercial Real Estate in Washington, D.C.

Herndon, Va.NAIOP, the Commercial Real Estate Development Association, has named four companies as winners of its inaugural Office Building of the Future design competition.

The winners of this competition are:

  • Gensler, Los Angeles, Calif.
  • Hickok Cole Architects, Washington, D.C.
  • The Miller Hull Partnership, Seattle, Wash.
  • Pickard Chilton, New Haven, Conn.

The Office Building of the Future submissions detailed each firm’s vision and concept plan for utilization trends, sustainability and new building technologies. Also included were accompanying site plan views and perspective sketches that highlighted future building features, materials, technology and trends, and hard cost budget estimates.

“Office design is changing rapidly and our industry needs to position itself ahead of the curve,” said Thomas J. Bisacquino, NAIOP president and chief executive officer. “This unique competition opened the door to thinking about what an ‘office’ may look like in the very near future.”

The winners will present their concept plans at Development ’12: The Annual Meeting for Commercial Real Estate during the morning general session on October 24, 2012, in Washington, D.C. Winners will be available to discuss their concepts after the session.

About the Winning Concepts

The winners of this innovative competition identified several common themes that will drive change in what is considered an “office” in 2020. The biggest driver for change seems to be personal technology, which has created an increase in telework. Employees are becoming more and more capable of completing service and information-based tasks wherever they choose. The advantage of the office of the future is that it will provide an array of flexible workspaces.

Gensler – Gensler’s concept is a “hackable” building which they define as “an existing structure that has been updated beyond recognition and that incorporates a diverse mix of multiple uses within a building.” According to Gensler, “Hacking is a culture, not a technology. We believe it represents the most dynamic, pragmatic and sustainable vision for the future of office buildings and the future of work.”

Hickok Cole Architects – According to Hickok Cole Architects’ winning submission, “No one is tied to a desk and there are ample opportunities for diverse work environments, such as lounge work areas, communal tables, benching areas, hive configurations, individual work stations, and shared office amenities.” The office building of the future must accommodate employers seeking multiple, smaller office locations. “This trend will not mean an overall decline in office demand, but will result in a reduction of the average size of any individual office location.”

The Miller Hull Partnership – The Miller Hull Partnership’s b(HIVE) concept represents “a building that becomes a part of an agile, adaptable business machine, somewhere between a hands-on community and the raw edge of technology.” Their vision includes 1) flexible, open space that is fast and inexpensive to build; 2) collaboration space that is carefully customized for tenants and easy to reconfigure; and 3) retail space on the ground floor with a diverse mix of uses.

Pickard Chilton – Pickard Chilton’s approach identifies three distinct principles. 1) Human qualities: A healthy workplace that is conducive to the productivity and well-being of employees, with qualities such as abundant natural light, access to fresh air, customizable work areas and greater collaboration spaces; 2) Business objectives: Innovative design and construction, efficient floor plates and multipurpose spaces support the owner’s business objectives; 3) Sustainability: The office building of the future incorporates an advanced system monitor to track, measure and display data about building performance to allow potential tenants to make informed decisions about their workplace and enable a high-performance building to stand out within a highly completive real estate market.

Honorable Mentions for the NAIOP Office Building of the Future design competition include CEI Architecture, KGD Architecture, RSP Architects and Ware Malcomb.

Media are invited to attend Development ’12: The Annual Meeting for Commercial Real Estate and the Office Building of the Future design competition session at no charge, but must be pre-registered. To register, contact Kathryn Hamilton at or 703-904-7100. For additional conference information or to learn more about NAIOP, visit

For registration information and the complete conference program, visit

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About NAIOP: NAIOP, the Commercial Real Estate Development Association, is the leading organization for developers, owners and related professionals in office, industrial, retail and mixed-use real estate. NAIOP comprises 19,000 members in North America. NAIOP advances responsible commercial real estate development and advocates for effective public policy. For more information, visit

Kathryn Hamilton