Minneapolis Public Service Building
Corey Gaffer
Product Spec Sheet

ElementBrandProduct Name
Interior FinishesDraper, Inc
FurnitureUnika Vaev
Interior FinishesCosentino
Interior FinishesCORIAN® Design
GlazingVitro Architectural Glass
DoorsCRL

Product Spec Sheet

Minneapolis Public Service Building

Henning Larsen as Architects

A new home for public service in Minneapolis brings local government to street level. It defies the architectural pattern of inaccessible bureaucratic centers, instead creating an inviting space for the public that encourages personal connections, open dialogues and civic engagement.

photo_credit Corey Gaffer
Corey Gaffer

The historic, granite buildings that make up Minneapolis’s Government District offer a stately yet opaque architectural vision of civic duty, engagement, and transparency. But if the traditional architecture parlante approach to civic design has required stylistic solemnity, the new Minneapolis Public Service building offers a contemporary alternative. 

photo_credit Corey Gaffer
Corey Gaffer

Developed in close partnership with the City of Minneapolis and public advocates, the building is the latest in a new coalition of civic architecture conceived around the question: “How can our public spaces better reflect the communities they serve?”

photo_credit Corey Gaffer
Corey Gaffer

It starts with openness. The soaring glass and aluminum facades that wrap the Public Service Building are a welcoming, bright face in the quad. Double height pockets are carved from the building, breaking up its massing and giving each of its frontages a distinctive presence.

photo_credit Corey Gaffer
Corey Gaffer

Easy public access also helps to extend an invitation to the public. Bus and light-rail stations pass by and drop off next to the new building, offering easy access to it from across the city.

photo_credit Corey Gaffer
Corey Gaffer

A large feature stair in the entry foyer provides inviting public space that, even if not physically connected to the square outside, is visually linked to life on the street.

photo_credit Corey Gaffer
Corey Gaffer

On the building’s second floor, an extra lobby plugs the 370,000-square-foot building into the city’s second sidewalk: Minneapolis’ sprawling network of skyways.

photo_credit Corey Gaffer
Corey Gaffer

The themes of transparency and connection continue inside, even as access slowly switches from open-to-all to secured workplace. The office floors—levels 3 to 10—contain daylit workspaces and enclosed offices, quiet spaces for personal time, improved indoor air quality, and a top-floor conference space, café and terrace. Once scattered across various buildings in the city, 10 city departments and 1,200 employees are brought together in one building.

photo_credit Corey Gaffer
Corey Gaffer

Today, employees are just as likely to meet in transit as they are in meetings: the communicating stairs in double height spaces trace their way across the building as they ascend, their landings expanded to serve as additional breakout spaces. In a government building requiring high security, the design still feels open and airy at every turn.

photo_credit Corey Gaffer
Corey Gaffer

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