After a 25-year run for the company at its 3 Easton Oval headquarters, 2020 ushered in a move across the street in a build-to-suit project that allowed the homebuilder to have a modern office space that matches its ambition as a company.

The last time M/I Homes got to put its stamp on how its home office was designed the average cost of a new house was $113,150, DVD optical disc storage had just been announced and “Forrest Gump” was the Academy Award winner for best picture.

After a 25-year run for the company at its 3 Easton Oval headquarters, 2020 ushered in a move across the street in a build-to-suit project that allowed the homebuilder to have a modern office space that matches its ambition as a company.

That’s according to Eric Gannon, principal at Gensler, a global architecture firm whose Chicago office partnered with Columbus-based M+A Architects to design the new five-story building at 4131 Worth Ave. for Georgetown Developers and M/I’s three-floor office space as the anchor tenant. Columbus-based Tenfold did the interior branding.

“The goal was to really link their brand as one of the nation’s leading homebuilders that cares about quality and exhibit that same quality for employees and customers that come into the space,” Gannon says. 

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To convey that commitment to quality, building materials are put on display to celebrate the work the company does. Wood is used throughout the office to represent the residential quality of the company’s homes. Brick, steel, concrete and reconstituted wood also were chosen as building materials in the loft-like space.

Amenities were chosen to foster a sense of community and give employees the ability to work in different environments. A large café provides a variety of seating postures for eating, working and gathering. There are four terraces that offer the opportunity to work in fresh air. Satellite coffee points, phone rooms, focus rooms and war rooms give employees a diverse set of places to get work done and collaborate away from their desks. There also are secure suite entrances to customer closing rooms and state-of-the-art training facilities. 

The 56,000-square-foot headquarters, which opened in July, also includes a design center where customers come to choose materials and fixtures.

Covid-19 didn’t prompt any fundamental design changes to the office, but Gannon says it will benefit from generous spacing and the indoor-outdoor options, including a courtyard. Large windows also will let in “a ton of natural light,” he says. 

“The employee experience was central to the design,” Robert Schottenstein, chairman, president and CEO of M/I Homes said in a prepared statement. “We set out to create a work environment where our people would feel energized, inspired, and excited. And, as a national homebuilder, we also wanted to create space that reflected our company’s longstanding commitment to quality and design. I could not be more pleased with the result; and most importantly, our people just love the space.”