Published on February 1st, 2014 | by UC&D Magazine0
Nu Skin Transforms Its Campus
Nu Skin’s Innovation Center and overall campus renovationrivals that of other big-time corporate giants.
By Brad Fullmer | Photos by Dana Sohm
Provo will never be mistaken for Cupertino, California or Redmond, Washington – home to corporate behemoths Apple and Microsoft, respectively – but Nu Skin’s recent $100-million-plus renovation of its campus headquarters in Utah’s third-largest city is creating quite a buzz for its stylish, modern design and functionality.
In fact, key NuSkin executives toured some Apple stores, including one in New York City, and desired a similar glass-intensive, highly sophisticated feel.
“Blake Roney and Steve Lund, two of our founders, really loved the “Apple” feel,” said Matt Burke, Director of Facilities for Nu Skin. “We selected the (Seattle-based) architectural firm Bohlin Cywinski Jackson (BCJ) because of their great work with low iron glass, clean clear finishes, steel panel, and cantilevered spaces.”
Burke said BCJ, which designed the six-story Innovation Center (NBBJ of Seattle designed other aspects of the campus renovation, which is still under construction), was given freedom to come up with base designs on space, materials, and layout. Roney then specifically directed the use of materials that were consistent with the firm’s branding.
“Every detail of the Innovation Center has the executive team’s thoughts and fingerprints all over it,” said Burke.
“The idea of a human focus experience was paramount to what we brought to the design,” said Ray Calabro, Principal Architect for BCJ. “We have a strong portfolio with a lot of high-profile companies, but we also like to work with companies that aren’t as large that might have a different perspective. NuSkin’s brand is so powerful – it’s about transformation, beauty, and elegance, and we felt those values could translate into the architecture with something clean and modern, with a lot of translucent, clear glass and stainless steel. There is a uniform quality to all of the projects on campus.”
The Innovation Center was completed last October and is the centerpiece of this multi-phase campus makeover, according to Troy Thompson, Project Manager for Okland Construction of Salt Lake City. Phase I added more than 168,000 SF to the existing 10-acre campus, which now totals 300,000-plus SF with Nu Skin’s existing high rise building, and is highlighted by a visually-stunning, four-story, 18,259 SF glass atrium with an etched, 14,800 SF suspended curved glass ceiling panel system that provides elegant aesthetics while helping to diffuse light and reduce solar gain.
Phase II includes six different jobs, including the plush Pavilion Building which Thompson said is the “jewel of the campus”, a 20,000 SF all glass building with extremely high-end finishes and a cost in the neighborhood of $1,000 per square foot. He said the construction schedule on the Innovation Center was “very aggressive” and offered plenty of challenges to both Okland and all subcontractors along the way.
“The intricacy of the details on this job was significant,” said Derek Losee, Preconstruction Manager for Steel Encounters of Salt Lake City. “The architect paid attention to fine details which pulls off the clean look of the building. We worked with multiple glazing systems; it was a very technical project. The suspended glass ceiling is unique and probably the largest application we’ve seen for something like that.”
Thompson said the project includes more than 500 chilled beams instead of a VAV box system. The beams have a four-pipe system with hot and cold water running through them, which reduced the amount of duct work and overall power requirements since less forced air is required.           The Innovation Center also includes a highly-technical data center, which was designed and built by Salt Lake-based Hunt Electric. In order to meet the tight schedule, much of the data center was pre-fabricated in shop, allowing 200 cabinets to be built, delivered and installed in less than 30 days, a full month ahead of schedule.
“The way we performed this work was unique due to the schedule,” said Darrin Guevara, Hunt’s ITS Division Manager. “We also had to take into consideration that the owners wanted to show off the data center, so it had to look visually appealing as well as perform now and into the future.”
Guevara said the campus’ fiber optics system was upgraded and replaced with CAT 6 cabling, with speeds that will realistically provide employees with up to 1 Gbps to their desktops.
Interior design elements were also critical to the overall project, including a furniture system designed and built by Henriksen/Butler of Salt Lake City called DIRTT (Doing It Right This Time), according to Reed Baier, Vice President of HB Build.
“Nu Skin was looking for a solution that provided future re-configurability,” said Baier. “The beauty of DIRTT is that it’s a custom solution on every level and we don’t have to sacrifice architectural details.”
Baier said DIRTT also provided:
•      Full-length sliding barn doors with integrated soft-close mechanisms which saved floor space and provided a high level of acoustics.
•      Integrated writeable surfaces on walls using low-iron back painted glass materials in gloss white, which helps with collaboration between offices.
•      DIRTT wall frames can support 700 lbs. per four feet of wall, which easily supports overhead cabinets.
Other aspects of the Nu Skin campus include:
•      The 22,000 SF Nu Skin Center for Anti-Aging Research will house all research and development activities.
•      26 tons of Virginia Mist stone in the atrium space.
•      Of the campus’ 10 acres, 2.5 acres will be dedicated as green space.
•      The Innovation Center is aiming for LEED Silver certification from the USGBC, with the entire campus hoping to secure LEED Gold certification.
•      A 4,000 SF corporate fitness center for 900 Nu Skin employees.
Burke praised the design and construction team members and said the owners are impressed with how quickly the Innovation Center was completed, and are anxious for ongoing construction to wrap up in six months.
“We wanted the entire Innovation Center, the below grade parking, parking terrace, south landscaping, and 100 South completed by the end of October in time for our global convention and Troy Thompson at Okland Construction provided options to make this happen,” said Burke. “The Okland team accelerated their schedules and began six-day work weeks and second shift work on most phases, and all subcontractors responded well. It was an execution of dedication and teamwork by Okland and all sub-contractors. n
Nu Skin Campus Expansion
Cost: $100 million-plus
Owner: Nu Skin Enterprises
GC: Okland Construction Co.
Architect: BCJ (Innovation Center); NBBJ (Campus)
Engineering Team: DCI (Structural); MKA (Civil); VBFA (Mechanical); Spectrum (Electrical)
Key Subs: Jones Excavation, Hunt Electric, Tech Steel, Palmer Christiansen Mechanical, Steel Encounters, Champion Fabrication and Supply with Iron Mountain Steel