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Great Lakes by Design: Energy in Scale

Great Lakes by Design: Energy in Scale

Great Lakes by Design featured the innovative new operations hub for Northpointe Bank in an article about resilience and adaptability in the workplace. Ghafari was tapped in late 2019 to design and lead a comprehensive study for the Grand Rapids, Michigan-based financial service organization that sought a cutting-edge facility that would accommodate their rapid growth, create an authentic and engaging recruiting tool, and ensure their real estate offerings remained flexible for the future.

“They were looking to be able to find more space for more people, but they really needed a new recruiting tool as well. They were looking to hire a lot of new talent and they really wanted the best and the brightest,” says Michael Lubbers, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP, Ghafari’s Director of Design in Grand Rapids. “Northpointe is passionate about their people both internally as well as their clients and customers, so they wanted that to be authentic as an offering when younger recruits or talented recruits walk in for interviews.

“They wanted to show them that they are who they say they are and they are very much about creating a healthy, collaborative, and safe environment for both their internal employees and their customers alike.”

With a mission to create an environment where employees wanted to work and had the flexibility to choose how they did that work balanced with a desire to optimize real estate investment, Northpointe looked to Ghafari to help transform a nearly 100,000 SF big-box facility formerly known as Cascade Commons into a multi-tenant space where 91,000 SF would serve as the new hub that could expand or contract as needed.

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“Our design process and our philosophy are very much human-centered, so everything we do is about enhancing that user experience for all the environments we design and create, and Northpointe very much was the pinnacle of all of that. Northpointe communicated to us that obviously the environment needed to mesh with their brand and, for us, brand is all about what is memorable,” Lubbers says.

Check out the full Great Lakes by Design article, “Energy in Scale”, here.

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