Inspire with Your Office Space, No Matter the Size / by Mark Schaefer

Closed versus Open Office Design: A Conversation for All

Much of the discussion around open versus closed office design and the need for flexible, collaborative space typically occurs between designers and their large office clients, who might typically need 15, 20, or 30,000 square feet of space. Within such large offices, and the budgets that accompany them, there is room and opportunity to create such spaces.

Not so the case in smaller offices where space is at a premium and just fitting in the necessary areas is difficult. But the need for the discussion of what kind of space would benefit the company and its employees the most is just as great, if not greater: small companies find themselves in need of maximizing their space to attract and retain the best talent and they must often do so with limited means.

Glantz Design: Closed and Open Office Design Working Together

MRSA recently completed an office space for Glantz Design, a strategic design studio in Evanston, IL. Inspired by our conversations with not only the owners, but also the employees at Glantz, we utilized a mixture of closed and open space to create their 3740 square foot collaborative office space.

Workstations are arrayed in an open floor plan with full-height windows overlooking the heart of Evanston. The pantry area was expanded to provide not only a place to eat, but also to meet. A large counter-height island with stools dominates one end of the space while the other half of the room is furnished with soft seating and a dry erase “idea” wall. The finishes throughout the office were carefully chosen to create a welcoming, comfortable atmosphere. Recycled wood sliding doors on the private offices and conference rooms were married with full-height glass walls to create the feeling of a bigger space and a sense of inclusion.

Office Design is Not One Size Fits All

At MRSA, we take a collaborative approach to the design process. Through conversations and consensus building in the early phases of a project, we work with our clients, whether large or small, to evaluate and choose which office type and aesthetic best suits their brand, business model, and employees’ needs.

A particular style or type of design has never been a one-size-fits-all proposition. Rather, I have always felt that it is my job and MRSA’s to assist our clients in identifying what inspires them and their employees. And then to create a space that captures their vision to the fullest.

To talk with us about your office needs, give us a call today.

Mark Schaefer

Mark Schaefer

Methodical, patient and wise, the turtle is a perfect blend of form and function. Mark’s meticulous persistence and insight ensures even the most minute aspect of your project gets our complete attention. History teaches when you want to finish ahead of the pack put your money on the turtle. Mark, a long time AIA and NCARB member, is also a registered self-certification architect. In his spare time you will most likely find him passionately machining precision parts for a rare automobile or motorcycle rebuild.