WorkplaceACT Corporate Headquarters

ACT : Corporate HeadquartersACT : Corporate HeadquartersACT : Corporate HeadquartersACT : Corporate Headquarters


The facility creates a sense of community that fosters the organization's culture of collaboration among groups, departments, and individuals. The headquarters facility was designed as a cluster of multiple buildings connected by a combination of interior and exterior common spaces and pedestrian paths that provide opportunities for interaction at all levels. Building orientations are optimized to integrate interior and exterior space for access to natural light and presentation of site views. A glass studio – Meltdown Glass Art & Design, from Chandler, Arizona - was hired to create a kiln-fired glass wall installation to surround the cafeteria servery. Flowing water patterns, stone patterns, and colorful dichroic glass were cast in each 11-foot high panel to create a three-dimensional piece of art. A total of 10 glass panels slide away at each end into concealed pockets during serving times.

Unlocking potential

AIA Wisconsin, Merit Award
ASLA Wisconsin, Chapter Excellence Award
IIDA Wisconsin Design Award, First Place

In the late 1950s, ACT's founders established their first standardized tests to help colleges assess the strengths of incoming freshmen. To start each student on his or her educational journey.

Now ACT not only unlocks the potential of students choosing a college, it also helps companies training staff and workers embarking on new careers.

When ACT found an ideal location for a new corporate headquarters, the company needed buildings that could foster collaboration among individuals and unlock the potential of its own people.

Corresponding with the rolling hills of the natural landscape, the clean and contemporary design utilizes stone, metal panels, and glass along with simple forms. Transparent, flexible, and open work spaces promote interaction and idea exchange, while providing beautiful views to the surrounding woods and terrace.

Linked by pedestrian routes, ACT's buildings are clustered around a central courtyard that defines a formal outdoor space and creates a social center at the heart of the campus. Just as ACT employees naturally find their way through the campus, so they are inspired to help others find their unique educational paths.

Location: Iowa City, Iowa


"So many projects talk about creating a sense of place - this one actually does. As a collective, it is successful as an urban gesture in a rural setting."

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