Among the high-profile projects we’ve completed for Jackson National Life Insurance Company (Jackson®) across the country is the evolution and expansion of their headquarters in Lansing, MI. Our team worked to understand their need for additional space, increased flexibility and a desire to minimize the impact of the built environment on the campus’ cherished site. What resulted is a vibrant and sophisticated string of workspaces, collaboration rooms, dining and entertainment zones.
square-foot conference center and dining expansion
foot enclosed connector bridge
square-foot office building
Connecting a Conference Center
One of Jackson’s top priorities was developing an on-campus conference venue to accommodate its firmwide and community events. The new Class-A conference center has the capacity to seat up to 400 people and includes a versatile pre-function hall that serves as a staging area for conference events. And when employees aren’t using the meeting rooms, the conference center acts as a free, collaborative space where associates can meet or perhaps grab a cup of coffee.
Meet Me at the Rendezvous
To connect the new construction, a 500-foot enclosed bridge was designed through the existing woodlands. The walk between buildings is broken down into a series of refuges designed to reduce the sense of distance, allowing portions of the facility to become more than just a corridor.
With a capacity for more than 1,200 workspaces, the state-of-the-art office offers employees stunning vistas of the surrounding woodlands. The two wings of office space are connected by a large atrium and monumental stairs rise from just past the entry lobby to provide access to all floors. Large meeting and break areas were designed to encourage employee interaction as well as a sense of camaraderie. In this space you can see how some of the trees that were removed during the site development were reused for components in the interior design.
High Performance and Low Impact
One of the major energy-saving strategies is the underfloor HVAC system, which delivers air directly to where people need it as opposed to blowing air down from the ceiling through space that isn’t occupied. It gives users flexibility because everyone has their own adjustable vent in their workstation. The building also has high-performance glass so it’s well-insulated and in total is running 40 percent more efficiently than the original office building.
The introduction of stormwater retention methods and wetlands mitigation helped minimize the project’s impact to the designated wetlands and extensive woodlands on the site.
Raise the Roof
The natural forest area is a prized and treasured amenity for the people working within the existing building. And with a goal to mitigate the impact to the surrounding site, we considered the possibility of slicing out the ground—the footprint beneath the conference center—and then raising up the lush groundscape and tucking the program underneath.
By using the footprint of topography to create the green roof, the design team preserved the view of the woodlands beyond, and created a scenic foreground vista for the existing building. Beyond its aesthetic advantages, the green roof reduces thermal heat gain, provides UV-ray protection and aids in stormwater retention and filtration.