How do you accommodate a 700-foot long open atrium into an integrated floor plan?
How do you accommodate a 700-foot long open atrium into an integrated floor plan?

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Forell | Elsesser Engineers provided structural engineering services for the new 460,000 sq. ft. four-story office building designed by Gehry Partners. The entire building has an open atrium space with various landscape balconies. The open space allowed for various individual floor plans to weave throughout the building. The building connects with neighboring Facebook campus buildings through multiple pedestrian bridges, which required extensive site work.

Customized Solution

  • The nearby parking garage is connected to the three above-grade levels of the office building with pedestrian bridges that have spans varying from forty to seventy feet. In collaboration with the architect, F|E designed fourteen full height stairs in the interior and exterior of the structure.
  • In addition, there is a four-hundred-foot-long pedestrian bridge with maximum clear spans of eighty feet that connects the second floor of the office building to an adjacent nearby structure.
  • The building’s first-floor elevation was built up to account for sea-level rise. There are bio-retention areas that hold water after stormwater events to reduce the impact on the stormwater system from peak runoff.
  • The atrium is lined with conference and huddle rooms that appear to defy gravity.  The freestanding structures are a combination of structural steel and light-gage framing, providing both structural and acoustical separations between floors.


  • Architect: Gehry Partners, LLP
  • Owner: Facebook
  • General Contractor: Truebeck Construction