Blue Sky
Beijing

Microsoft’s Asia-Pacific Research & Development Group fosters creativity for the 5,000 engineers and staff who bring innovation to one of the world’s fastest-growing IT markets.

The culture of the Asia-Pacific R&D Group resembles Microsoft’s early days in Redmond, Washington: young, elite knowledge workers developing projects at all hours and collaborating with colleagues across multiple time zones. The group’s two-building headquarters in Zhongguancun provides a cutting-edge, amenity-loaded workplace to attract top talent, while remaining within Microsoft’s global workplace standards.

A key challenge was to reinterpret Microsoft's low-rise Redmond campus for the compact urban setting. To this end, the towers are imagined as vertically connected smaller buildings: three-story clusters of office floors, linked by a series of skygardens. A pedestrian bridge connects the two towers, and amenities such as the cafeteria and fitness center are distributed between the two buildings to encourage staff to move between them.

Meeting and breakout spaces distributed throughout the floors facilitate collaboration. Open workspaces line the edges of each floor to maximize daylighting, while private offices and conference rooms are located around the core. In addition to capitalizing on natural light, additional sustainability features include a double-skin glazed southern facade, raised-floor air distribution, vertical sun shades on the east and west facades, auto-dimming electric lighting with photosensors, solar water heating, rainwater collection, and low-VOC paints and adhesives.

Lighting Design
Lighting Design
Lighting Design
Lighting Design
Lighting Design
Lighting Design
Lighting Design