Bold Films has announced plans to relocate its headquarters to the new Hollywood 959 creative entertainment campus. The campus is located at 959 N. Seward St. in the Hollywood Media District. Bold Films has leased 15,000 square feet in the five-story West...
Commercial real estate investing is a growing industry where personal relationships are pivotal—and these relationships are commonly built via face-to-face meetings and document-heavy correspondence. Sponsors and investors have typically exchanged information through low-tech and high-touch channels, without a great reliance upon technology. As a...
Colliers economist looks to 2017 for real estate trends
San Diego Union Tribune
With election day less than a month away, Andrew Nelson, chief economist of Colliers International, one of the world’s biggest commercial real estate brokerages with 16,000 agents in 66 countries, expresses disappointment that the economy hasn’t attracted much attention in the...
Kaza Azteca America, Inc. leases 12,463 RSF at 700 North Central Avenue in Glendale. Deal represented by Greg Lovett of Cresa Partners.
BLOG & ONLINE NEWS
US Draws Ever-Larger Share of Global CRE Investment Spending
While global property investment is on the increase, private capital fundraising has slowed -- reflecting widespread economic uncertainties. However, investment capital continues to flow into commercial real estate as investors scour markets for returns. Global property investment has risen to $1.35 trillion...
Hundreds More For-Profit Colleges Put at Risk of Closure
In a move that could lead to the closing of several more for-profit colleges, the Department of Education late last month terminated its recognition of the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS), the largest accreditor of for-profit colleges. The action...
DTLA Office Market Picks Up
Investor demand for quality office product is picking up in the Downtown Los Angeles market. Chase Plaza has traded hands between two unnamed investors for $50 million in a highly competitive sale that drew international attention. The sale serves as an...
Lessons Learned About Outdoor Amenities
Providing amenities that satisfy all residents’ needs and that are cost effective can present challenges in luxury multifamily community development and management, Sudberry Properties’ SVP Marco Sessa tells Globest.com. West Park, Sudberry’s new 612-unit luxury apartment community in Civita, was the top winner in San Diego Building Industry...
Gensler Survey Reveals Secret Sauce for Creating Innovative Workplaces
Becoming a firm that leads in innovation stems from three key variables, as laid out in data from Gensler’s 2106 Workplace Innovation Survey. Those variables include space design (to what level it supports collaboration); meaning and purpose (whether employees view their organization as making...
Bold Films to Move Headquarters to Hollywood 959 in Los Angeles
Bold Films has announced plans to relocate its headquarters to the new Hollywood 959 creative entertainment campus. The campus is located at 959 N. Seward St. in the Hollywood Media District.
Bold Films has leased 15,000 square feet in the five-story West Wing building. The independent entertainment production and finance company has worked on films such as “Nightcrawler,” “Whiplash” and “Drive.”
JH Snyder Company developed and built Hollywood 959 this past March. The campus includes 245,000 square feet of creative office space in two wings. Greg Frankovich of Newmark Grubb Knight Frank represented Bold Films in the transaction. Michael Geller of First Property represented JH Snyder.
Commercial real estate investing is a growing industry where personal relationships are pivotal—and these relationships are commonly built via face-to-face meetings and document-heavy correspondence. Sponsors and investors have typically exchanged information through low-tech and high-touch channels, without a great reliance upon technology.
As a result, the traditional commercial real estate investment process ends up being long and drawn-out, and because of regulatory restrictions, a sponsor’s network of investors has been limited to the people he or she already knows—friends, family members and business colleagues in particular.
Recently, however, some restrictions have been lifted, and momentum is building toward a tech-driven revolution that promises to provide a much-needed dose of modernization to commercial real estate investing.
A new era
Thanks to the JOBS Act, sponsors are now allowed to market investment opportunities more broadly through general solicitation of accredited investors. This means they can post properties online, thus opening up an immense new audience of potential partners. In fact, according to the SEC, more than 12 million U.S. households qualify as accredited investors.
With access to so many more potential investors, it only makes sense for real estate sponsors to embrace modern technology to reach these individuals, remain organized, boost efficiency and maximize this key opportunity.
As we’re beginning to see, tech is turning commercial real estate investing into a scalable, transparent industry of long-term relationships. Think along the lines of social media: investors can be “linked” with sponsors and monitor investment opportunities—all from the comfort of their smartphones or computers.
Everything is readily available at the click of a mouse. Relationships can be formed online in a matter of minutes, and information that used to take weeks to compile and digest can now be created and consumed within days.
A process like this has never really existed in private real estate investing, and countless investors and sponsors are beginning to reap big rewards from it.
These benefits include:
Demystifying commercial real estate
When it comes to investing in the stock market, you can click around the internet and get a pretty good idea of whether you’re making a smart decision. But when it comes to investing in properties, the only information that is readily available to the average person is much more generalized. Any deep analysis costs money to access, and even that information may not help you make an informed decision.
Tech-driven investment platforms, on the other hand, serve as easy-to-use news hubs for investors, making data, insights and trends highly accessible to all. Over time, sponsors can amass robust profiles of information that help build understanding around commercial real estate, boost transparency to unprecedented levels and empower investors to make smart decisions.
As a direct result of this demystification, we are seeing a drastic increase in tech-enabled commercial real estate investing. In fact, according to Massolution’s 2015CF Crowdfunding Industry Report, more than $2.5 billion was invested globally via online avenues in 2015, and that number is expected to grow to $3.5 billion this year.
Armed with the right technology, sponsors can now easily create and distribute digital information packets regarding each and every investment opportunity they’re offering. They can use templates and input in-depth information regarding a property’s history, location, tenants and surrounding market. Then, they can digitally send them to interested investors or make them publicly available via web-based platforms.
Beyond that, online platforms provide sponsors with better ways to tell their personal stories and explain their investment philosophies. They can clearly express their value proposition, highlight their trustworthiness and describe their approach to running a property.
Deeper details about both sponsors and buildings result in less risk and fewer surprises, as investors fully understand the past, present and future of the properties in which they are interested.
The latest investor relations technologies provide sponsors with the means to regularly report to their investors. Today’s investors demand ready access to information about their investments across every asset class; now, commercial real estate can meet these demands with efficient online reporting.
These technologies have created a new type of progress report—one that allows sponsors to provide on-demand information to investors from reporting templates that are updated on an as-needed basis when developments or changes occur.
It’s paramount for the commercial real estate industry to respond to the demands of up-and-coming investors—and the transparent, real-time nature of tech-enabled investment and reporting platforms is doing just that. In fact, one study cites that Millennials are 10 times more likely to use online investing platforms than baby boomers.
In a world that has evolved to meet modern investor expectations—where unlimited real-time information has become the norm—tech-driven investment platforms are ushering commercial real estate into the future.
Information and opportunities are now readily available, and investors can build knowledge about the industry like never before. With technology facilitating the flow of information, documents and data are easy to access at any time and transactions are as easy as logging in and signing up.
It’s time to leave the letterhead and long lunches behind and join the tech revolution today.
Colliers economist looks to 2017 for real estate trends
San Diego Union Tribune
With election day less than a month away, Andrew Nelson, chief economist of Colliers International, one of the world’s biggest commercial real estate brokerages with 16,000 agents in 66 countries, expresses disappointment that the economy hasn’t attracted much attention in the campaign, except for globalization and talk of protectionism to save American jobs.
“I think that’s a step in the wrong direction,” he said in an interview Wednesday along with local managing partner Andy LaDow at the brokerage’s local headquarters in the University City. “I don’t think it’s perfect and certainly there have been some downsides to globalization, but there isn’t any doubt that it’s been a positive force for economic growth and U.S. economic growth as a whole. Most countries and most people have benefited, even though there have been some people who have lost out as a result of trade, although I think that has been overstated.”
With Republican nominee Donald Trump, a famous commercial real estate developer, one would think that the industry would be thrilled to have one of its own in the White House.
But LaDow said Trump is more known today as a manager of a brand rather than a big player in development.
“He’s a small real estate player in the big picture,” he said. “That’s something people don’t really know.”
Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, a former U.S. senator from New York, has hobnobbed with Wall Street and real estate tycoons but that familiarity has not bred much attention on the commercial real estate world, Nelson said.
“I don’t think she’s talked about making real estate an issue per se,” he said.
Nelson said the polls seem to show the outcome heading in Clinton’s favor and LaDow said her victory points to more “consistency” in economic policy than if Trump wins.
Regardless of who wins, though, Nelson offered two priorities for the new administration and Congress in 2017 — infrastructure and tax reform.
“We don’t have a choice,” Nelson said. “You can’t just keep patching things. You have to be proactive, be creative and find a way to finance it.” he said.
Many experts have said the U.S. is trillions of dollars behind in fixing up roads, water systems and communications systems.
“Every American should have access to high-speed Internet that is faster and cheaper,” he said. “Ours is slower and more expensive (than abroad). That makes no sense and it holds us back as a country.”
On taxes, Clinton and Trump have talked about eliminating the “carried interest” deduction Wall Street hedge fund managers enjoy as a way to minimize their taxes. Nelson said real tax reform should involve stripping out subsidies and incentives that he called “a mess.”
“It needs to be more straightforward,” he said, conceding he’s an economist, not a politician, and can’t predict if reform will occur. “It’s on my wish list.”
On commercial real estate trends, Nelson said 2016 has been a disappointment and overall expansion since the recession has been only two-thirds as robust as in previous recoveries.
“It’s been moderate by our historical standards but more significant and greater than our competitors” in the developed world, he said.
He and LaDow offered these insights into trends in the commercial market:
Offices: Companies, especially those employing young workers in their 20s and 30s, increasingly want to locate in urban centers “Those kinds of neighborhoods are doing very well and the more sterile kinds of communities and office districts have been lagging,” Nelson said. LaDow said San Diego’s vacancy rate has not varied much from the long-term average of about 12 percent. He said downtown San Diego has “hit its stride” and demand will grow although financing new construction remains a problem.
Retail: Big changes are resulting from the shift to online shopping but Nelson said most purchases will continue to be made in stores. He counted himself “overall bearish” but said success will come to those centers that are “dynamic and interesting” and offer new reasons to visit, such as for food and entertainment. In secondary and low-income neighborhoods, he said a revitalized center can succeed if it is done well.
Industrial: San Diego’s industrial segment is more about warehousing and distribution than manufacturing, but the only areas available for substantial growth lie in Otay Mesa, to serve the cross-border market, and North County, especially San Marcos. LaDow said institutional investors are active in a big way — “We haven’t seen that much in the past.” Nelson said the sector is growing in part because of the shift to offsite retail inventory storage and away from te, back-of-store holdings.
Multifamily: The apartment boom continues unabated, fed by millennials not wanting or financially strong enough to buy their first home. “It doesn’t mean that they won’t grow up,” Nelson said, “but it’s fewer than before.”
US Draws Ever-Larger Share of Global CRE Investment Spending
While global property investment is on the increase, private capital fundraising has slowed -- reflecting widespread economic uncertainties. However, investment capital continues to flow into commercial real estate as investors scour markets for returns.
Global property investment has risen to $1.35 trillion in the past year across the globe, according to annual research out this past week from Cushman & Wakefield.
New York once again topped the ranking of cities from a total investment perspective. The U.S. also accounted for a larger share of the growth, with 15 of the top 25 cities on the list.
That shift to the U.S. has caused London to lose its global crown after Britains voted this past summer to leave the European Union (Brexit). The volume in the U.K.'s capital has fallen from $39 billion to $25 billion over the previous 12 months.
Meanwhile Cushman notes the world's largest gateway cities increased their share of CRE investment, with the top 25 drawing in 53.3% of all global spending, up from 52.7% in the previous year. However, a range of gateway markets were down, including Tokyo, Washington, DC and Frankfurt, attributed to a combination of limited supply and local competition.
"We remain positive about investors' interest in allocating capital to real estate," said Carlo Barel di Sant'Albano, CEO, Global Capital Markets for Cushman & Wakefield. "Although volatility has declined over the past 12 months overall risks are still evident. While global uncertainty will continue to make investors more cautious, this is counterbalanced by the fact that corporate confidence has held up."
Looking ahead, the scale of changes facing investors in the macro environment, from a slowdown in China, to Brexit, to potential interest rate hikes and the U.S. elections, has resulted in many investors struggling to decide where to look for value.
Allianz Real Estate, the real estate arm of the German insurer Allianz Group, is one such global investor shifting its location and asset mix strategy. Speaking last week at Expo Real in Munich, Allianz CEO Francois Trausch said his firm plans on expanding its U.S. holdings and making its first purchases in Asia. In Germany, by contrast, Trausch said competitive pressure is making investments difficult.
For now, Trausch is aiming to lower the office portion of the firm's global portfolio from 65% to 45% and to concentrate more on retail and logistics (currently 25%). In the U.S., Trausch said Allianz favors trade and logistics projects, as well as student housing.
Scarcity of available product remains a factor in many markets as stakeholders keep an eye on interest-rate hikes and their potential effect on pricing.
Avison Young came to similar conclusions about global investment in its Fall 2016 North America, U.K. and Germany Commercial Real Estate Investment Review, also released this week.
"Irrespective of the ongoing conversation around potential interest-rate hikes and new geopolitical factors such as the Brexit fallout, abundant capital continues to seek the stability and returns that the commercial real estate sector still offers,” said Mark E. Rose, chairman and CEO of Avison Young.
"Historically low interest rates continue to fuel our industry. Simply put, if there were some adverse event that caused interest rates to move up, we would have a correction - and that's not necessarily a bad thing," says Rose. "But, at this point, we don't expect to see rates move for a considerable period of time, thus keeping commercial real estate top-of-mind with many investors, compared with alternative investments."
Rose noted increased investment in the U.S. may be held back by uncertainty surrounding the upcoming presidential election, but he expects this short-term hesitation to dissipate once the election is over.
The free-floating global uncertainty is also showing up in private capital fundraising, which declined in the third quarter, according to Preqin, a leading source of data and intelligence on the alternative assets industry, including real estate. Private real estate fundraising declined slightly in the third quarter with 32 vehicles securing $19 billion in investor capital.
Capital continued to be increasingly concentrated among fewer firms with the third quarter seeing the lowest number of funds to reach a final close since 2003.
Consistent with global investment trends, North America-focused funds again dominated the market, raising 81% of funds closed and securing 85% of global investor commitments.
"The $19 billion raised (in Q3 2016) is not far off recent quarters, and while fundraising this year has not quite reached the levels seen in 2015, there remains a great deal of institutional appetite for real estate,” said Andrew Moylan, head of real estate products for Preqin. “Moreover, the fundraising marketplace remains healthy; half of the 10 largest funds on the road have already held interim closes."
The level of dry powder held by private equity real estate firms stands at $230 billion as at October 2016, up from $210 billion at the end of 2015 and from $156 billion four years ago.
Hundreds More For-Profit Colleges Put at Risk of Closure
In a move that could lead to the closing of several more for-profit colleges, the Department of Education late last month terminated its recognition of the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS), the largest accreditor of for-profit colleges.
The action could force some for-profit schools to cease operations because their students may lose federal financial aid. It also puts at risk hundreds of millions of dollars in loans funding the properties housing such schools.
ACICS has accredited more than 300 schools with main campuses and an additional 410 branch campuses.
Last month, ITT Educational Services filed for voluntary bankruptcy after the U.S. Department of Education barred the ACICS-accredited firm from accepting any new students receiving federal financial aid at its chain of for profit schools operated under the names ITT Technical Institute and Daniel Webster College.
ACICS plans to appeal the department’s decision and has been given 18 months to correct deficiencies while the appeal is pending. Meanwhile, ACICS retains its federal recognition and remains determined to fully execute its accreditation responsibilities in a professional manner, the Council said.
"While we are disappointed in this decision, ACICS plans to continue diligent efforts to renew and strengthen its policies and practices necessary to demonstrate this agency’s determination to come into full compliance with the Department of Education’s recognition criteria and, most importantly, to improve outcomes for the estimated 600,000 students currently attending ACICS-accredited institutions,” said Roger Williams, ACICS newly appointed interim president.
“There is a working partnership in all of this and we all own it,” Williams said. “The errors of the past, whether intentional or circumstantial, have left their mark and only time and the determination to move forward will carry us through this period; there are no shortcuts.”
Morningstar Credit Ratings this week issued a report saying $400.6 million in securitized commercial mortgages may be at risk of default due to the Dept. of Education’s action. Morningstar identified 13 loans backed by 11 properties that face the greatest default risk.
Most loans are not at risk in the short term, as the schools will have 18 months to find a new accreditor recognized by the Education Dept. However, should they be unable to receive accreditation from another agency, the schools face a potentially fatal halt in federal funds, Morningstar noted.
DTLA Office Market Picks Up
Investor demand for quality office product is picking up in the Downtown Los Angeles market. Chase Plaza has traded hands between two unnamed investors for $50 million in a highly competitive sale that drew international attention. The sale serves as an example of the changing market, which is getting more popular among tenants and still offers a relative value for investors to markets like West Los Angeles.
“We had more activity on this building than any other buildings we have sold in the last 12 months,” Phillip Sample, SVP at CBRE, tells GlobeSt.com. “Most of the demand is not coming from local investors but from the East Coast and abroad, specifically. Foreign investors and companies alike are flocking to Los Angeles, trying to capitalize on our employment talent in downtown. Westside companies are looking to gain access to this growing talent pool. We expect rents will continue to climb as we anticipate further increases in demand for office space.” Sample and his CBRE colleagues Brad Chelf, Chris Caras, and Michael Shustak represented the seller, which was described as a partnership between a New York-based group and a local investment company, and the buyer in the transaction.
The increase in investor demand for properties like Chase Plaza aligns with a increase in demand from creative tenants for space in the market. Creative tenants have been courted to the market, but are just one brand of new tenants, which include co-working spaces and professional services firms “We are currently completing leases for different types of tenants from the Westside we haven’t seen in Downtown before,” says Sample. “It is a very exciting time. This growing tenant demand is justifying some of the sales pricing we are seeing now. Downtown just saw a few larger lease deals that are supporting office rents. Downtown Los Angeles is gaining momentum and finally becoming an urban center that can compete with other major metropolitan markets such as San Francisco and Chicago.”
As a result, property values and rental rates are beginning to rise, and investors that haven’t made the plunge are now wanting to get into the game. “The increase in demand for downtown office space is pushing pricing. We are starting to complete deals that justify the rents we have been forecasting, and the pricing is going up accordingly,” Sample explains. “Investors have been watching the L.A. office market and this particular part of town. 2016 has been a year of confidence building. They are seeing this area continue to transform and thrive, and money that’s been sitting on the sidelines is now making moves.”
Chase Plaza is a 15-story, 105,000-square-foot office tower occupied by 14 tenants. It is located at 888 West 6th Street.
-Kelsi Maree Borland
Lessons Learned About Outdoor Amenities
Providing amenities that satisfy all residents’ needs and that are cost effective can present challenges in luxury multifamily community development and management, Sudberry Properties’ SVP Marco Sessa tells Globest.com. West Park, Sudberry’s new 612-unit luxury apartment community in Civita, was the top winner in San Diego Building Industry Association’s recent Icon Awards. The community was honored as “Attached Community of the Year” and won the top awards for architecture, landscape architecture, leasing environment and advertising/digital marketing. Designed by Newman Garrison + Partners, West Park was honored in the “Best Architectural Design–Multifamily Residences” category and was praised for its stylish contemporary design, extensive recreational amenities and park-like setting. The property was also honored for “Best Landscape Design–Multi-Family Residences.” Lifescapes International Inc., designed West Park’s resort-like landscaping that includes a trio of pool areas, a private park, a half-mile jogging trail and exercise stations.
We spoke exclusively with Sessa about outdoor amenities in luxury communities and some of the mistakes from which he and his firm have learned.
GlobeSt.com: How important are outdoor amenities in luxury multifamily communities?
Sessa: They’re particularly important for larger communities. They allow residents to have a little bit lower price point because the unit is smaller, but still have the opportunity to do things they wouldn’t be able to do inside their units. For example, West Park offers demonstration kitchens, outdoor heating and large tables for hosting dinner parties. We spent an awful lot of time thinking through that component of the project. Once you’ve designed the inside of the unit, it’s repetitive, but amenities have a life of their own. We do our best to try to provide amenities that have a lot of variety. Each pool has a different attitude. One may be louder and rowdier, one more of an exercise pool for laps and other quieter, where you can sit at the pool and take a nap or read a book. One pool plays music that you can hear underwater. We really try, from landscape design to paving materials to furniture, to think through the programing and how they want to operate.
GlobeSt.com: What elements are necessary for outdoor features to be successful in this setting?
Sessa: Ideally, they engage residents’ social aspect. Most of our amenities, we want them to have the ability to host different functions and to be multi-use, suitable for a wedding shower, a birthday party or a simple barbecue—this brings residents together. We also wanted to also support some of the programing we do with events. We have cooking classes every two weeks, where people can sign up, meet their neighbors and learn how to cook at the demo kitchen and barbecue outside next to pool. At the pool, we want them to have the ability to do a lot of different things. Some have cabanas with CDs in them and music; some have outdoor pool tables. You’re not just going to one place to do one thing; you have a lot of different options, and that provides the opportunity for different demographics to come together and make friends. They’re more likely to stay and renew their leases.
GlobeSt.com: What are the drawbacks to developing outdoor amenities in multifamily?
Sessa: We also own Circa 37 Apartments, across from West Park. There’s a really neat pool there where residents could control the music. The problem is there have been disagreements because people like different types of music. There was a scenario where music was being played that had bad words, and moms with kids were there—it created a bad vibe. We had to remove that feature and play music that was down the middle. You’re trying to balance what everyone likes, but not everyone likes the same thing. This was part of the reason for doing pools with different flavors; you’re congregating together, and you can’t do that unless you have scale.
Also, if you have pool furniture with cushions, you may be having to replace those cushions once a year because suntan lotion creates stains, and the last thing you want is an amenity that doesn’t look nice. You need to budget enough money so the operation works correctly and they look brand-new year round. Another issue with amenities is their hours of operation. Even with the rowdier pools, there are still people living around those, and you need to respect that and ensure you don’t have people at midnight making a racket and annoying other residents.
GlobeSt.com: What else should our readers know about West Park?
Sessa: One of the coolest things about West Park is its fitness facility. There’s no question in my mind that you can live there and not pay for a gym membership. We run and operate classes; a group exercise room with spinning and Pilates and different yoga classes; a two-story climbing wall—it’s as nice as any commercial gym around. I was there today and there were 20 to 25 people using the facility. A community that has an emphasis on amenities for everyone is important.
Gensler Survey Reveals Secret Sauce for Creating Innovative Workplaces
Becoming a firm that leads in innovation stems from three key variables, as laid out in data from Gensler’s 2106 Workplace Innovation Survey. Those variables include space design (to what level it supports collaboration); meaning and purpose (whether employees view their organization as making a positive impact on society); and managerial relationships, specifically to what extent a manager cares about employees’ well-being and career development.The survey identified a group of behaviors and attributes that significantly increase creativity and innovation by comparing employers scoring in the top 25% on Gensler’s Innovation Index to those at the bottom. Digging deeper, analysts found innovative employees have choice about where to work and use it to maximum effect, working in a wide variety of spaces that meet their needs, whether in an individual space to focus, a conference room to brainstorm or learn a new skill, or a social space to chat with co-workers during a coffee break. Additionally, innovators spend less time in the office (74%) compared to less innovative employees (86%); have twice as much choice about when and where they work; are twice as likely to have access to and use a cafeteria, coffee shops and outdoor spaces to work and socialize; and report twice as much access to amenities, like specialty coffee, restaurant, gym and childcare facilities.
Gensler workplace leader Janet Pogue, who led this decade-long research tool, said innovative employees also have better-designed and more functional workspaces, no matter how open. Key factors in designing high-performance spaces involve noise and access to co-workers and resources. Shown above is one of eight spaces at CBRE's San Diego Workplace360 office in Downtown San Diego. Gensler presented the results of the survey to clients at an event last week, which was moderated by University of San Diego The Burnham-Moores Center for Real Estate executive director Stath Karras and held at the Alexandria at Torrey Pines. Janet said this survey is conducted every few years and builds on previous findings and is designed to identify strategies that inspire creativity and innovation in the workplace. Data from this survey, which involved a sample of more than 4,000 respondents, provides a window into the workplaces of “top innovators” as measured by the Gensler Innovation Index score.
Top innovators were determined by segmenting respondents into four groups based on their Innovation Index scores and employees’ ranking their employers as “most innovative.” Comparing innovation scores by industry revealed technology/internet/telecommunications at the top, but all 11 industry sectors had fairly similar scores. In discussing innovator characteristics, Janet said there were no significant differences by generation, but noted differences between the 2016 survey and the last survey in 2013. She explained, for instance, that virtual collaboration has doubled in the last three years, shifting from 7% to 15% of the time.
Based on this survey, Gensler has developed a set of design actions every organization should consider to optimize the workplace and improve performance, innovation and employee satisfaction. - Invest in more functional workplaces and effectively manage those functions most important to individual performance to make any space type, even open office space, highly effective. - Diversify beyond the desk by including a variety of group workspaces inside and outside the workplace. Innovators have access to and utilize a greater variety of spaces in and out of the office. - Empower the entire organizational community, not just senior leadership, with the ability to choose when and where to work. From 2013 to 2016 choice at all levels of an organization fell, but senior leadership continues to report greater choice than more professional or administrative staff. - Connect every employee to the meaning behind their work, the company’s mission and the broader organizational community with design strategies that support and impact corporate purpose.
Gensler created an ecosystem at the The Alexandria at Torrey Pines to inspire and support innovation. “We created an interesting place for scientists to get away from the lab and innovate outside of it by creating an aggregate of what you see in the community,” she said. Her firm formed partnerships with local businesses to provide on-site amenities and services. The Alexandria at Torrey Pines iincludes an EXOS Fitness Center with a basketball court and Pilates studio; celebrity chef Brian Malarkey's Farmer & Seahorse restaurant; and a variety of meeting spaces, including the Illumina Theater and indoor/outdoor patio bar and fireplace lounge.
Partners providing on-site services include a florist, fresh produce delivery provider, shoe and leather repair, oil change provider, ride-sharing, dry cleaner and auto detailer.
Gensler SD director of workplace Maria Martinico described design elements at Gensler and San Diego Union-Tribune offices in Downtown SD that provide employees choice and functionality. Gensler’s office space has a rooftop patio and Gensler-branded bikes to borrow and SDUT’s provides WiFi and plug ports throughout the building to allow employees to work in multiple spaces. Pictured above is the indoor/outdoor patio bar and fireplace lounge at The Alexandria at Torrey Pines.
She said the workplace design process involves envisioning the desired result around the client’s business role, and using desi
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