KeyBank Higbee.

Cleveland, Ohio

project overview

When planning for the lease expiration of their Client Services Center at the former May Company department store building, KeyBank used the opportunity to relocate and realign departments working in space that had been untouched for over 25 years. They wanted to relocate their Client Services Center staff to a more modern facility that would foster their collaborative approach.  With this decision, KeyBank would be vacating an outdated and inefficient facility in search of a space that provided an overall cost savings across their real estate portfolio and would provide an opportunity to design space to reflect the company’s commitment to sustainability.

While the design was influenced by many factors, there were four clearly defined drivers established early in the project process that served as the baseline for all decision-making.  These were visibility, flexibility, collaboration and mobility.  Visibility was maintained through the use of consistent circulation paths across all floors; with the development of a strong graphics, signage and wayfinding system and through the shift to the use of all interior oriented offices.  Flexibility was achieved by strategically sizing various space types in a similar fashion so that the use of a space could be altered from one environment to another. Key to the adaptation of migrating from a very enclosed, high walled environment to one of interior based offices and low-walled workstations was the implementation of both formal and informal collaboration spaces.  This allows the user to self-select the type of workspace best suited for the task at hand, also reinforcing the idea of mobility, whether onsite or off.

The completed project involved the relocation of 1,100 employees while remaining fully operational and the design of approximately 200,000 SF of previously demolished space in the historic Higbee building that once housed one of Cleveland’s beloved downtown department stores.  KeyBank occupies three floors of this building with footprints ranging from 60,000 SF to 70,000 SF.  This project achieved LEED-CI v2.0 Gold Certification status.

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