Inside Automattic/WordPress’ San Francisco Offices

  • Client Automattic,
  • size 14,250 sqft
  • Year 2013
  • Location California, San Francisco, United States,
  • Industry Hardware / Software Development,
  • Office Snapshots, along with millions of other websites, is published using WordPress, whose parent company Automattic recently moved into a new office space located in San Francisco. Designed by Baran Studio Architecture, the warehouse give some space for staff to work, but will also be used to hold events. Automattic is run primarily as a virtual company, meaning their employees are scattered across the globe.

    Back in 2008, I emailed the company’s founder, Matt Mullenweg, about submitting office photos. He promptly replied with some photos of his house.

    Some design notes from Baran Studio:

    “Baran Studio’s task was to create a space that could accommodate the usual contingent of maybe 15 or 20 people, but also transform to comfortably fit a few hundred coders (who need to plug-in) for a special program or event. Wordpress’s new Automattic Space is a re-imagined warehouse that was formerly a martial arts studio that had fallen into disrepair. The core concept for the transformation was to maintain the clarity and simplicity of the existing shell, and insert an adaptive new ‘sleeve’ or coating.

    The plywood wall acts as a guide throughout the space. The limited structural and mechanical upgrades were left raw and minimal. A plywood wall winds throughout, guiding the visitor through the space. The wall serves several functional purposes along the way.

    At the entry room and library it serves as shelving. At the front desk, the wall screens for privacy. Where the restrooms are, it allows for further privacy – so you don’t walk out of the bathroom into a giant warehouse full of people. In the kitchen and café area, the wall creates a more intimate space.

    The wall’s palette of wood, black metal, and concrete reinforces the intimate feel.”

    Design: Baran Studio Architecture
    Photography: Scott Hargis Photography