Amazon in the Regrade, The Spheres
Three intersecting glass-and-steel spheres enclosing five freestanding floors, totaling 6,038 m² (65,000 ft²) and functioning as the centerpiece and gathering spot for Amazon’s new, 320,515-m² (3.5 million-ft²) urban corporate headquarters in Downtown Seattle. The first-of-their-kind spheres are constructed from organically shaped steel sections and are packed with a plant collection featuring more than 40,000 individual plants from more than 30 different countries—a collection worthy of a top-tier conservatory. The Spheres provide a unique workspace intended to inspire creativity in Amazon’s employees and feature treehouse meeting rooms, waterfalls, paludarium, and a four-story living wall. MKA worked closely with the architect, contractor, detailer, and fabricator through all phases of design, fabrication, and erection of this complicated project. By integrating fabrication and erection constraints into the earlier design stages, the project team ensured that the architect’s vision was executed within the owner’s challenging schedule requirements and budget.