Adobe — Lehi, Utah & San Jose, California

Creative Campuses for Adobe

Adobe stair detail
San Jose - 1.3M SF
Lehi - 260,000 SF
Lehi - $65M
San Jose - 2022
Lehi - 2012
San Jose - Gensler
Lehi - WRNS Studio & GSBS
San Jose - Devcon
Lehi - Okland Construction

Whether in the built environment or in the digital realm, groundbreaking design comes from challenging assumptions and pushing beyond conventional boundaries. When digital media and marketing software company Adobe decided to expand its physical presence, it sought architecture that would embody its brand’s reputation for creativity.
Holmes has had the pleasure of collaborating with Adobe on two campuses, realizing cost-effective commercial office solutions with a placemaking edge in both communities.

Adobe’s San Jose and Lehi campuses brought forth exciting design opportunities that Holmes eagerly tackled from structural and fire and life safety perspectives.

Adobe facade at night
Adobe Campus - Lehi, UT
Adobe Corporate Campus – Lehi, UT

For its new Lehi campus, Adobe set an unconventional course from the beginning. A scenic 13-acre Utah Valley site with views of the Wasatch Mountains was chosen as the location. The site’s natural surroundings and easy access made it ideal, but the long, narrow site was divided in half by a four-lane road. Despite the unusual site features, Adobe’s goal of creating an iconic building to serve as a recruiting tool, provide inspiration for employees and foster collaboration remained the same.

Holmes was selected as the structural engineer for the project before the search for the campus’ location began. This allowed Adobe, Holmes, designers and contractors to quickly form a true design team. The master planning phase began while Adobe was still in the process of procuring the site.

Adobe Utah interior corridor

The first challenge the team tackled was how to cross the 120-foot roadway without making the workplace feel like two separate campuses. Early design options used pedestrian connections, bridges and tunnels to link the two sides of the site. While working together to sketch out these options, the design team refocused on Adobe’s main objective—creating an inspirational, iconic structure. This led the team past the more predictable solutions to something far beyond the ordinary. The office building itself would span the roadway to join the north and south halves of the site.

A moment-frame system was used to cantilever areas of the building over the reinforced concrete base to add visual interest alongside the varied topography of its surroundings. The four-story structure is narrow with a steel and glass façade to take full advantage of the views.

The new Adobe campus shows that exemplary design doesn’t have to be more expensive if the approach is thoughtful. Working together from master planning to completion with a shared vision, the team finished the building in 27 months.

Adobe Lehi is the recipient of a flurry of awards including: SEAONC Award of Merit, AIA California Council Award, IIDA Best Large Tech Office & AIASF Merit Award.

Adobe interior grand stair
Adobe sketch book
Bridge to span four lane road.
Adobe Utah Bridge diagram

The challenge for the team was to select the right structural solution to ensure the innovative design could be accomplished within budget. While a steel-framed building would cost less initially, the expense to finish the interior spaces would increase the price dramatically.

Zander Sivyer, Principal & CEO (Structures)
Adobe North Tower San Jose Holmes
Adobe North Tower - San Jose, CA
Adobe Founders Tower – San Jose, CA

Adobe expanded its global headquarters in Silicon Valley with a high-rise housing over 4,000 employees. Holmes provided fire and life safety engineering, working with the design team to develop alternative solutions and code variances per the architectural intent and project goals. Holmes is implemented a performance-based approach for atrium assembly space and high-rise smoke control design, allowing the structure to stretch higher and more efficiently.

Adobe North Tower San Jose
Adobe North Tower San Jose

The campus consists of an iconic 18-story office tower, a placemarker pedestrian bridge connecting employees between buildings, and associated parking. The office tower largely consists of an adaptable open workspace, with additional assembly space provided within. The headquarters also incorporates areas to host and entertain clients, an all-hands gathering space, dining amenities, roof decks, and a wellness center. Parking is provided at two underground levels as well as on six above-grade levels.

Adobe North Tower San Jose Holmes

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