GM Vehicle Engineering Center East Building

Warren, Michigan


The sprawling General Motors Technical Center has served as the automaker’s engineering base since the 1950s. As part of a major investment program aimed at modernizing and expanding this historic campus, GM acquired a neighboring 10-story building that would provide workspace for up to 800 international employees traveling to the Tech Center to work on new global product designs. Making this happen meant completing a major upgrade of the nearly 50-year-old building to embrace GM’s new corporate facility specifications and transformation guidelines. We worked closely with client stakeholders to understand their vision of an engaging environment that would draw the next generation of innovators.


We kicked off the multi-phase project by conducting a comprehensive assessment of the 160,000 SF building and performing subsequent programming, planning, and conceptual design. The lack of as-built documentation and engineering maintenance records complicated the programming phase, prompting us to develop the program based on the building’s maximum capacity. Following the conceptual design phase, the project proceeded under design-build delivery with Ghafari providing architecture / engineering and construction administration services.

Our design of the modernized facility features a variety of spaces and amenities that foster connectivity and interaction, including open-area workstations, a series of collaborative spaces and small conference rooms, breakrooms, a large telepresence space, social employee gaming areas, a large town commons area, a market and guest restaurant, hoteling workspaces, fitness areas, training rooms, and a large convertible conference room. Our design also upgrades the HVAC systems to promote energy efficiency and comply with GM corporate standards.


Facing a compressed schedule, we met with the client’s facilities team on a weekly basis to make sure that the project progressed in alignment with their distinct goals. The completed “Vehicle Engineering Center East” carries forward the proud legacy of the Tech Center while embodying GM’s vision of a fresh workspace where innovation and ingenuity can flourish.