F5 Tower

Finalist 2020

The F5 Tower is the new headquarters for F5 Networks, a savvy tech firm with a quirky personality. The 28-floor tenant space is located in downtown Seattle, the center of a booming tech ecosystem. F5 sought to establish an environment that enabled their unique culture and skilled employees to thrive.

Comprehensive signage and wayfinding took inspiration from the F5 brand, encouraging daily movement throughout the vertical campus, and promoting staff engagement within the space. The result is a thoughtfully designed environmental graphic design system that includes a dynamic wayfinding tool, a consistent graphic language, architecturally integrated puzzles and a series of analog landmarks that enhance the user experience and aid with orientation in the tower.

Architecturally, the new HQ is located in a tower with a central core and 28 unique floor plates. Social floor "stacks" act as community spaces every three floors and are connected by rotating social stairs that maximize views and encourage vertical movement to neighboring floors. Together, these conditions create varying paths of circulation between the floors and utilize a singular wayfinding ‘line of connection’ that leads users to the stairs, key destinations and amenities.

Additionally, F5 has an extensive and diverse art program that the graphic and signage work intends to complement. Aimed to celebrate the brand and reintroduce organizational energy, the workplace environment maintains a balance of function and simplicity to allow the art from local artists and employees to shine through.

The F5 tower proves that by combining wayfinding with unique landmark installations, and community spaces a company’s office space can reflect the characteristics of the company and act as the ideal home for the F5 Networks. On numerous site visits, users expressed a sincere affinity for the wayfinding system and its effectiveness.

Design Firms: 

NBBJ

Client: 

F5 Networks

Project Area: 

456,600 sq ft

Open Date: 

April 2019

Project Budget: 

N/A

Photo Credits: 

Sean Airhart, Yusuke Ito, Brooke Shary

Design Team: 

Eric LeVine (principal in charge), Yusuke Ito (lead designer), Choung Tonnu (designer), Brooke Shary (project manager)

Consultants: 

Sandor Wiesz (Master Puzzle Creator, established F5 Tower puzzle mechanics and hints), Jonas Kuo (lighting designer, provided consultative guidance on lighting for wayfinding and landmark elements)

Fabricators: 

Rainier Industries, (production and installation of graphics, wayfinding, signage and landmark components)

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