This U.S. headquarters for an international prosthetics and mobility company with worldwide headquarters in Germany occupies the top floor of a tenant office building in north Austin. Ottobock hoped to capture the laidback character of its new hometown while also maintaining direct ties to its German roots, celebrating its tradition of design and innovation. The design team proposed leaving the architecture of the base building in its raw state and looked to the organic forms at the foundation of Ottobock’s mission and history for inspiration: the human form of its products, the curved white facades of the Berlin office and its signature white mannequins. Flowing white surfaces became the focus.
Important to the company work environment is natural light for all employees, access to exterior views, and a variety of work and meeting spaces. The project includes a sculptural product showroom and “social hub” space in addition to work areas. A fully integrated raised floor system allows for flexibility and use of the concrete structure as a finished ceiling surface.
Health is fundamental to Ottobock’s mission and the design promotes wellness with daylighting strategies and attention to indoor air quality, energy efficiency and accessibility. The entire office perimeter has windows and the few offices located on the window wall have floor-to-ceiling glazed walls, allowing natural light penetration throughout the office. The design team worked with local artisans to design and build the 30-foot-long social hub pecan table and the welcome wall in the showroom.
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