The new addition to the Kresge Foundation Headquarters in Troy, MI builds off a large-scale, LEED-Platinum expansion completed in 2006. The addition, nestled up against the west side of the original building, not only increases the capacity of the campus and creates new programmatic spaces, but also completely transforms the existing workspace from traditional, individual offices into open offices and collaborative workspaces.
Critical to the vision were key programmatic changes to provide more spaces and opportunities for both staff and community members to dine, work and socialize together.
The large convening room, featuring double-high floor to ceiling windows, announces the Foundation to passersby. The multi-functional space serves as communal dining room by day. In the evening when programs and events take place, a warm glow of activity and movement can be seen from the street, projecting a sense of community and transparency.
The addition smoothly connects to the existing building through a subtle but significant change to the circulation. The original circulation plan was u-shaped; with the addition it’s now a full loop, encouraging continuous circular movement. Throughout the day, Kresge staff chat with each other on their way from one part of the building to another, turning the extra-wide corridors into another, formidable convening space.
The addition to the Kresge Foundation is a story of long-term relationships between architects and clients and the power of architecture to support philosophical and cultural change. The building now speaks the same language of collaboration as the Foundation’s own work.