Great River Energy (GRE) is a not-for-profit, member-owned, electric utility cooperative that envisioned their new 166,000 SF headquarters campus as a showcase of sustainable building solutions directly transferable to their electric co-op members. The architect led the design, working with McGough to deliver Minnesota’s first LEED Platinum® building and win a prestigious AIA COTE Top Ten award.
The headquarters anchors Elm Creek Boulevard, a major thoroughfare, by injecting a large, parklike green space of sweeping hills of prairie grass reminiscent of GRE’s agricultural roots. Inside the headquarters building, the design team created a highly open and interactive setting that encourages knowledge sharing and collaborative team building throughout the organization daily.
In keeping with GRE’s roots, the space was designed to embody the co-operative history and civic benefits of strong individuals building strong communities. This progressive workplace included a transformational shift from 80% enclosed, private offices to 80% open offices. Post-occupancy evaluation success factors showed that 87% of staff indicated that `Design positively contributes to collaboration’ and `High-Quality Workspace and Energy Efficiency and are synergistic’.