Warner Building Designed to Enhance Teamwork, Improve Client Experience, Welcome Community
After more than two years under construction, the Warner Building today welcomed more than 240 attorneys and staff of Warner Norcross + Judd LLP to new offices in downtown Grand Rapids designed to enhance teamwork and improve the experience for clients, attorneys and staff.
This morning, the firm held a ribbon cutting to officially open the doors to its new office, which features 80,000 square-feet of space on floors 11 through 15 built to meet the needs of West Michigan’s largest law firm today – and into the future. Designed by a cross-section of firm team members, Warner’s new office features workspaces that bring the outdoors in, enhanced technology and security and more collaborative spaces focused on enhancing communication and improving workflow.
While the move was “just across the street,” preparations began before the groundbreaking in June 2017 to ensure a smooth and seamless transition to the Warner Building, which is located in the heart of downtown Grand Rapids at 150 Ottawa Ave. NW. The law firm is the anchor tenant in the mixed-use development, which includes a 15-story office building, 12-story hotel, ground-floor retail and restaurant space.
“I speak for the entire firm today to say how incredibly thrilled we are with our new Grand Rapids home,” said Managing Partner Douglas A. Dozeman. “The finished space truly exceeded our expectations and will provide a gracious opportunity for us to welcome clients and our community partners, as well as offer a flexible, functional workspace that meets the needs of attorneys and staff.
“Many hands went into this project, from our Design Committee to our general contractor Dan Vos Construction to our good client Haworth. We took great care at each step to ensure we were creating a space for everyone, and I think it shows. I’d like to say a special word of thanks to Amanda Fielder, the partner who so ably led this project while continuing to have a rich, full legal practice.”
Warner’s new office features:
- 270 dedicated workspaces for attorneys and staff and seven private drop-in or hoteling spaces for visiting attorneys
- “Neighborhoods” for legal assistants to encourage greater and more efficient sharing of work while enhancing teamwork
- A 2,500 square-foot outdoor patio on the 15th floor with sweeping views of downtown and the Grand River that will welcome clients and the community into the space
- Enhanced security throughout, with improved building access controls
- 19 conference rooms of varying sizes
- State-of-the-art collaborative technology designed to simplify video conferencing, webinars and conference calls
- Two kitchens, including a café-kitchen on the 15th floor that seats 60 and offers booths, high tops and open seating
- 11 collaborative open-work environments, including coffee nooks throughout the footprint
- “Quiet zones” on each floor for individual projects
- A wellness room offering a refrigerator, recliner and sink for nursing mothers or those seeking additional quiet space
- Greater connectivity, including mobile devices in each of the collaborative and quiet spaces
- Reduced file storage options in favor of centralized filing and technology designed to enhance digital files and record-keeping
- Ergonomic design features, including adjustable stand-up desks for all team members
“This project was never simply about building a building. It has always been about building space that is flexible and able to support the practice of law into the future, knowing there will be fundamental changes,” said Amanda Fielder, who chaired the firm’s Design Committee. “We knew we needed offices that would accommodate all generations, from team members in their 20s to attorneys and staff in their 70s. And we also knew we needed to anticipate the future needs our team may have by creating flexible space that anticipates trends in the industry."
“Our over-riding goal was to create a space that encouraged people to move, not just sit at their desk in the same space for eight hours a day. We tried to carefully balance personal space with engaging collaborative space by placing Chromebooks and iPads everywhere to encourage people to grab a cup of coffee and continue a discussion or work on a project away from individual offices. We paid a lot of attention to natural light, ensuring the majority of our team has direct access to windows.”
Orion Construction built and developed the Warner Building, which transformed a surface-level Ellis Parking lot into the newest Class A office building in downtown Grand Rapids. Dan Vos Construction served as the general contractor for the buildout of Warner’s offices. GMB Architecture + Engineering provided interior design and engineering services. Office furniture throughout the new space was supplied by Interphase Interiors using products from Haworth, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of adaptable work spaces and a longtime client of the firm.
By providing discerning and proactive legal advice, Warner Norcross + Judd LLP builds a better partnership with our clients. An AmLaw 200 firm, we’re one of Michigan’s largest law firms focused on providing the best legal solutions and exceptional client service to organizations throughout the world. Connect with us on wnj.com, LinkedIn, Twitter or Facebook.
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