‘Lose yourself in a little piece of nature’-Horticulturalist Ben Eiben
Ever imagined working in an office that is also a jungle with over 400 species of plants? Scheduled to open to the public for the first time on January 30th, Amazon’s new spheres are making their appearance in Seattle, Washington.
Designed by NBBJ as part of Amazon’s vibrant urban campus, the project consists of three gigantic domes that form a biomorphic greenhouse, spanning an area of 650,000 square feet (60390 m2). These massive glass bubbles were first approved in 2013 and are now opening their doors, five years later.
The Amazon spheres function as a significant workspace with vibrant meeting rooms and conference halls for the lucky Amazon workers in Downtown Seattle. Additionally, the project acts as a new architectural landmark for the city; one that might even be more catchy than Seattle’s signature observation tower, the Space Needle.
Hugged by greenery and tropical plants, this lively jungle houses co-working spaces and secluded meeting nooks which take up as many as 800 people.
Made of glass and steel, the spheres come in different sizes, with the largest bubble spanning 130 feet in diameter (40 m2) and topping out at 95 feet tall (30m2).
According to the Seattle Times, Amazon envisions the building as a game changer for its employees; a place to “feel differently, to think differently,” according to Ron Gagliardo, the Spheres’ lead horticulturist.
Inside the three spheres, there is a jungle consisting of 400 species of carefully selected plants from around the globe. The landscape design is tailored to directly connect Amazon’s employees with nature. In addition to the 60-foot-tall living wall that is seen from most of the offices, the gardens feature many exotic and uncommon plants.
‘Lose yourself in a little piece of nature’, says the horticulturalist and plant geek Ben Eiben. He claims that the living wall is one of a kind due to its large scale and the technology behind it.
The majority of the plants are native to South America, Central America, Africa, and Southeast Asia. An enormous 40-year-old Port Jackson fig tree acts a central internal landmark inside the garden. You definitely can not miss it.
“There’s an amazing teaching moment here, and we envision being able to open these Spheres to the public occasionally for field trips and for educational purposes with different schools and universities,” said John Schoettler, Amazon’s vice president of global real estate and facilities.
“This is our office space, and we don’t invite the public into any of the towers. This is just an alternative working space for our employee,” adds Schoettler.
For more information about Amazon’s Spheres, check “Amazon’s Biodome Headquarters | NBBJ.”