Henning Larsen Architects Completes New Microsoft Domicile in Denmark
Good Neighbors: New Microsoft Building in Denmark Puts a New Face on Technology
Designed by Henning Larsen Architects, the building pioneers a new approach to office design, reflecting the cooperative style of working conceived by Microsoft founder Bill Gates.
Henning Larsen Architects announced that it has completed Microsoft Domicile, a new 194,000-square-foot building that unites the global software company’s Danish facilities under a single roof. Its inclusive environments support cooperation at all levels: between internal staff, clients and partners, and the local community.
The design of the building was guided by the knowledge-sharing principles that form the heart of Microsoft’s business model, which are outlined in a white paper written by Bill Gates, “The New World of Work”.
Unlike Apple, Facebook, Google, and other high-tech firms, whose imposing headquarters are at odds with their suburban settings, Microsoft Domicile is intentionally designed as part of a larger urban campus, accessible and neighborhood-oriented. The ground floor of the building features facilities that are open to the public—a café and auditorium—as well as places for students from the nearby Technical University of Denmark to study.
This inclusive, cooperative program continues throughout the design of the offices. A pair of cubic buildings, rising six and seven stories, come together around a V-shape, sunlit atrium that acts as a locus for interaction. Windowed offices and meeting rooms overlook the central space, engaged in a visual dialogue across the atrium. Activity-based workspaces of various sizes, from small meeting spaces to midsize conference rooms to large auditoriums, encourage group-based productivity. On every floor, communal kitchens, lounges, and gaming areas act as hubs for casual gatherings, which reinforce the shared mission of the Microsoft teams.
Henning Larsen’s holistic approach to Microsoft Domicile extends to the landscaping and sustainability program. The landscape of small green plazas links the building to the surrounding town. Several studies of the microclimatic conditions on the site have informed the planning of the landscape. Facts about wind, sun, and shade qualify the work of the landscape architects in order to provide optimal conditions for both vegetation and humans. Microsoft Domicile marks an important step in the realization of the Lyngby-Taarbaek municipality as a northern European center of research, learning, and knowledge-intensive businesses. Microsoft Domicile was developed in close collaboration with Microsoft and the investor, Danica Pension. Joining Henning Larsen Architects on the project team was turnkey contractor Hoffmann and consulting engineers Alectia, Cowi, and Grontmij.
About Henning Larsen Architects
Henning Larsen Architects, founded in 1959, is an international architecture and urban design firm with offices in Copenhagen, the Faroe Islands, Hong Kong, Istanbul, Münich, Oslo, and Riyadh. It is particularly well known for designing dynamic mixed-use communities, iconic cultural landmarks, and innovative educational facilities. Its broad portfolio includes state-of-the-art research institutes, sustainable city districts, and flagship commercial headquarters.Henning Larsen Architects is the acknowledged expert in sustainable design practices in Scandinavia. The firm is committed to creating environmentally responsible, energy-efficient projects that provide social, as well as architectural, solutions.