Even the glass is smart at the new home office of Encompass Health, formerly HealthSouth, Birmingham’s leading healthcare company and operator of hundreds of hospitals, home health and hospice centers in 36 states and Puerto Rico.
News organizations were invited to see the company’s new home in late March, before employees moved into the seven-floor, $75 million building off Liberty Parkway in early April.
Design in the 199, 350-square-foot building, carried out by architecture firm Gensler and project supervision from Brasfield & Gorrie, was meant to offer “democratic access to daylight, ” according to Lawrence Whatley, vice president of design and construction for Encompass. There are plenty of glass-front offices, open stair wells and, of course, each floor has a coffee bar meant to caffeinate staff interaction.
The smart glass, installed in some conference room windows, offers a bit of privacy with the activation of a switch that turns it from clear to opaque white. For offices, there are desks that allow for seated or standing users.
Other modern touches include a quarter-mile jogging/walking trail and a fitness center with space for group classes. The main entrance features veined Alabama marble and a 3, 500-square-foot dining area with an open kitchen.
The new building, two years in the making, puts all area Encompass Health employees under the same roof. It’s now set up for 500 employees.
Text by Dave Helms