Project Spotlight: 889 Winslow St.

Project Spotlight: 889 Winslow St.

NEWS, Project Highlight /

From a construction perspective, Redwood City is a fascinating and inspiring place to launch a large project. The area is rich in both natural beauty and architectural history, with landmark buildings standing beside fanning palm trees and the impressive redwoods for which the city is named.

At the same time, the city is located within San Francisco’s Bay Area, situating it in close proximity to Silicon Valley — the central hub of the nation’s technology sector. Redwood City is seeing an increase in demand for advanced, creative, and digitally-connected spaces where some of the world’s leading companies can house top talent and drive innovation.

Redwood City is a place where the past and the future collide — and South Bay Construction (SBC) was fortunate to have not just one project here, but three.

The Winslow Shell

This shell construction project posed a few challenges, largely because of its location. First, the building site was within walking distance of some of the downtown core’s most monumental structures, including the Fox Theatre, a 1920’s icon, and the San Mateo County History Museum, famous for its dome, cupola, and stained glass windows. Second, the site was situated amongst offices and headquarters for some of the world’s largest corporations. How could a building blend in with these historic surroundings, while still meeting the needs of tech-savvy tenants looking for a contemporary, flexible, multi-functional workspace?

To address this dilemma, the client planned to maintain a majestic Old World look for the building’s exterior. SBC stayed true to the project’s roots with thick brickwork, heavy precast bases, and grand columns made with glass-fiber-reinforced concrete. Inside, high recessed ceilings, large windows, and warmly-colored woods ensured a comfortable, creatively-engaging modern environment. While still at home in its old surroundings, the Winslow project provided cutting-edge space for retail, restaurants, and corporate offices.

Because the worksite was very close to the Fox Theatre’s property line, this project needed to take its historic neighbor into account. Many alternate means and methods of construction came into play as a result, including special fire protocols, first-rate smoke shutters, and a powerful alarm system. For some constructions firms, the additional considerations would have been a significant hurdle, but the client had worked with us before, and was familiar with our ongoing commitment to quality and integrity.

The Upper Tenant

This second-and-third-floor office build was a major improvement project, as the tenant wanted to move out of its old offices in Palo Alto and into a brand new landmark space. Redwood City’s revitalized downtown core provided this client with two notable advantages: a neighborhood with a distinct and vibrant character, and premium access to major players in innovation, investment, and tech. Though some stakeholders were nervous about relocating and preferred Palo Alto to Redwood City, their doubts were quickly quelled by the location and design of the space.

The scope of this project was significant; the interior team had to progress with the tenant improvement while sizeable portions of the shell were still being constructed. This meant that the TI and shell teams had to communicate daily, making sure that their material deliveries and areas of work were expertly coordinated. While the shell team was building exterior skins and elevators, the TI team was busy making sure that the tenant’s spatial and technological needs were met.

On top of this, the requirements of the Redwood City Building Department changed frequently during the course of the construction, forcing the TI and shell teams to adapt as new structures and stories brought new rules and complications. SBC put in the effort to meet the shifting standards and technicalities, and worked cooperatively with the City to obtain occupancy for tenants.

The specifications for this building’s interior design were also unique and called for some creative budgeting: the tenant devised a “mad scientist” aesthetic to unify the office space and demonstrate the company’s commitment to out-of-the-box thinking. This theme was brought to life with bright colors, abstract wallpapers, and imaginative elements crafted with corten steel, including a striking entryway. The chandelier in the reception area was custom-fabricated in Seattle, though it was the responsibility of SBC and its subcontractors to assemble it onsite.

This new upper-level office building has already been a huge success. The patio and outdoor pavilion area on the third floor has proven especially popular among the company’s clients and employees, providing a one-of-a-kind space for work, leisure, and both formal and informal events.

SendGrid

If completing the exterior refurbishment and an interior office retrofit concurrently wasn’t ambitious enough, the Winslow project upped the ante with two concurrent office retrofits. Dovetailing with the shell facelist and the upper-level office project was Denver-based communication delivery company SendGrid’s impressive but practical office goal: a top-of-the-line workspace in the Silicon Valley. They turned to SBC for a comprehensive tenant improvement, with the aim of creating a sleek, stylish, and open office that could accommodate the latest tech.

With furniture, decor, lighting, and ceiling fixtures all designed in the company’s signature blue and white — and all the connectivity a scaling tech firm needs — SBC was able to create a space that authentically conveys SendGrid’s brand. Now, the company enjoys a dynamic Silicon Valley-worthy work environment in a building that it shares with a vibrant community of five other companies. Nearby, Theatre Way provides employees with plenty of choices for food and entertainment, and the Caltrain is conveniently located down the street.

If you are looking to update your space in a challenging setting, contact South Bay Construction to get the job done. We’re committed to building strong relationships with our clients so that every project perfectly suits you and your neighborhood.

NEWS, Project Highlight