The new Pinterest headquarters in San Francisco is inspired by the redesign of the company's web platform — clean, simple, intuitive. The building is a four story concrete structure that previously housed a John Deer factory in San Francisco’s SOMA district.
The program is organized as porous, concentric layers around a large, central interconnecting atrium and stair. The program includes: large all-hands /dining space on the ground floor, expansive open workspace on the upper three floors, and numerous meeting rooms, team rooms, lounge spaces, quiet room, maker lab, coffee bar, and design studio. A key aspect of the design involved extending the existing two story atrium to the ground floor, creating a central void at the building’s center that visually connects all four floors— into which was inserted the main communication stair.
The stair acts as the central organizing figure to the space at all levels. Awash in daylight, this central stair — referred to as the Knitting Stair in reference to the company’s collaborative ethos represented by the act and product of knitting — takes the form of a perforated steel clad volume that doubles back and intersects itself at its midpoint. The intersection allows people unexpected glimpses between two flights of people moving up and down within the stair’s interior volume. The stair’s design and materiality produces the effect of a bright, ever-changing glowing heart at the center of the company.
Knitting Stair is constructed with a steel skeleton, clad inside and out with perforated steel. The outer perforation porosity is slightly greater, allowing the stair's integral LED lighting along its structural edges to light the surrounding space after dark. The interior porosity being slightly less than gives a greater sense of enclosure within, while contrasting the large overlook/apertures and 'double negative' glass prism at the central intersection.