KLJ Headquarters

Bismarck, North Dakota

JLG was retained by Bismarck Partners to design a new 80,000 s.f. office building for KL&J, a growing civil engineering firm headquartered in Bismarck, ND. When asked how the building should represent them, the client offered words like “conservative, stable, substantial and trustworthy”, and so JLG proposed a solution that would offer beauty and permanence through the use of utility materials representative of KLJ’s civil engineering core – concrete, glass and steel – in a simple and elegant way.

Programmed to accommodate 400 staff at capacity, JLG worked with KL&J to re-think the corporate workplace, focusing on a collaborative office environment with workspace options and common space amenities – technology is allowing us to re-think the size of our workspaces and visionary leaders recognize the value in turning that square footage over to shared space in the form of cafes, smart rooms and other employee-focused amenities.

The plan layout was in direct response to this building program and the site. The shape of the site accommodated an ideal east-west orientation for both daylight and solar control, so JLG organized the building into two “office boxes” along this axis, connected with a north-south “circulation and collaboration box”. While the plan continued to develop in more detail, the simplicity of this concept remained consistent throughout the design process.

Each of the boxes is fifty feet deep with windows on both the north and south faces, offering views and daylight throughout the floor plate. While allowing for customization as required for specific workgroup needs, the layout at each of the floor plates is generally consistent to allow for maximum flexibility in locating, re-location and creating new departments within the building.

bismarck office workspace

As KL&J prepares to build for its future, it is doing so on a foundation of solid planning, a logical and innovative translation of the building program into a floor plan, and exterior forms that will represent the vision of KL&J for years to come.