This multinational technology company specializes in consumer electronics, computer software, and online services and is one of the largest technology companies by revenue.
The goal for GPA Mexico, ICAP Global was to represent the customer’s values from every possible angle in their downtown Mexico City location. This meant providing the organization with the ultimate user experience according to their standards. A challenging standard to emulate since this organization has set the benchmark for UX for almost 50 years.
The building is one of the most technologically advanced constructions in Mexico City and features robotic shoebox type parking, LEED Green Building certification amongst many other nuances. Since the location is in one of the most seismically active cities on the planet, the building can withstand a seismic event of 9.0 on the Richter scale.
The baseline was simple. Every room should be identical, work effortlessly and glitch-free, steadily supervised, supported, and deliver unprecedented reliability.
Planning an integrated design for a multi-purpose AV facility within a top global organization is a challenge by itself. The fact that this customer is one of the top-ranked companies worldwide with its core business in technology and innovation increases the challenge exponentially. The project implementation was extremely lengthy and changed constantly.
The challenges ranged from issues such as HVAC noise, acoustical isolation to products so new that they were being built for this project for the first time.
Other challenges arose during the project both technical and human-related: lighting issues, miscommunications, and unclear plans.
Teamwork, transparency, and devotion to the project were a must. Every individual involved needed to give everything, be opened to learn and discuss openly every option available to deliver the best outcome for the customer. The balance between stakeholders was complex and needed to be factored in for every solution.
When looking at the DNA of this company GPA Mexico focussed on some key conceptual guidelines. Factors such as simplicity, functionality, state-of-the-art innovation, stability and reliability, perfect aesthetics with the highest possible finish became the primary design goal.
From projector lifts used as rack elevators to save room footprint, to special Fliptop assemblies, every element had to be thought out. GPA also understood that the most important innovation was going to be working from the inside and not as a contractor.
The project included huddle rooms, meeting rooms, laboratories, engineering and marketing spaces, press briefing rooms, user-experience centers, breakout rooms, barista, and chill-out spaces, training facilities, boardrooms, and conference rooms. The installations also included a music studio. This mix of a recording studio, critical listening facility, Dolby Atmos cinema with video conference capabilities, and audio and video equipment with infrasonic to ultrasonic reach, was intended to impress the most discerning ears of the music world.
To achieve the desired goal, a dedicated multitask group of staff was put together and worked closely for more than a year with the preliminary project, budget evaluation, final design, and documentation. This included audio, video, acoustics, lighting, and interior design.
The group included Project Management at every level and a dedicated Account Manager. GPA also had a dedicated single point of contact for the customer.
The project was composed of thousands of plans and diagrams. These plans featured specific acoustic calculations and the application of vibration isolation devices and specifically designed insulation. A systematic normalized punch list was adopted to overcome some issues encountered. Including issues originating from the irregular shape of the building and a 3D multilayer planning device was used on many occasions.
In December 2019 the customer advised the need to have the recording studio ready in record time. To help gap the manpower limitations from local contractors the GPA team stepped in to help with the finishing touches including carpentry, electric connections to get the project over the line in time.
Simplicity and standardization with strong vendors support and efficiency were key to solving the project challenges. There were no textbook solutions. During crucial moments during the project, one of GPA’s staff was living on-premise to ensure the expected deliverables were met.
The technical aspect was an important component to the success of this project and new innovations were developed as a result. But more importantly, it was the human side of the project that became important like clarity, empathy, respect, learning, teaching, sharing, writing, erasing, doubting, and listening.
The GPA team felt part of the customer’s team during the whole project and were proud to be associated with their new colleagues to get this project off the ground.