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Incyte Corporation, a rapidly growing biopharmaceutical company, wished to expand on their current site where they had developed strong ties to the community and enjoyed the unique character of their existing building, a former department store which they had converted to office and research facilities. The steeply-sloped site had limited buildable area but offered the potential for dramatic views of the Wilmington skyline and the Delaware Memorial Bridge. Incyte's projected growth necessitated a highly-compressed schedule for the project, and the site's direct adjacency to historic residential neighborhoods would require a sensitive approach.

Granum A/I and their team worked closely with Incyte to develop a phased design strategy to meet these goals. The strategy included a new building dedicated to offices and campus amenities which liberated space within the existing building for expansion of Incyte's research component. A new parking garage to serve the expanded campus was required to meet the additional parking needs of the site.

Numerous strategies were utilized to address the scale and appearance of the new facilities in relation to the adjacent neighborhoods and community. To minimize sight lines onto the campus, disturbance of the site's mature woodlands was kept to a minimum and significant additional planting was added to the site. The height of the office building was limited to four stories (zoning regulations permitted a significantly taller building), and the major mechanical elements were placed at grade rather than on the roof. Large terraces reduce the apparent scale of the building, serve as amenities for the employees, and provide a visual relationship to the terraced hillside.

Reflections of the sky and landscape in the building's glass and metal façade blend the building with the site. The new parking garage nestles into the hillside between the new and existing buildings. A semi-enclosed walkway, cantilevered from the top floor of the garage, acts as an extension of the building façade and provides an accessible connection between the new and existing buildings. A fully-occupied green roof softens the visual impact of the garage and significantly contributes to storm-water management while offering numerous amenities to Incyte's employees, including outdoor dining, a pickle ball court, and community gardens.

The interior of the new building is organized around a large atrium which extends from the connection point with the garage to the center of the building where a sculptural stair connects all four floors. A unique feature wall draws you though the atrium, and a café with a large living wall offers a moment of respite. The large expanses of floor-to-ceiling glass provide an abundance of daylighting to the office spaces and take advantage of the expansive views.

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Incyte Corporation Headquarters Expansion

  • Project Data
  • Client: Incyte Corporation
  • Project Size: 154,000 SF, 355-car Parking Garage
  • Location: Wilmington, DE
  • Completion Date: Summer 2017
  • Contractor: Whiting Turner
  • Project Team
  • Patrick McGranaghan, Mark Duckett, Robert Hibbard, Ximena Valle, Matthew Peters, Soo Oh, Jennifer Hemphill
  • Consulting Partners
  • A. W. Lookup Corporation (Structural), AKF Engineering (MEP), Timothy Haahs & Associates (Parking Garage), Andropogon Associates (Landscape Architecture), Duffield Associates (Civil), Roofmeadow (Green Roof), The Lighting Practice (Lighting Designer) The Façade Group (Envelope), Lerch Bates (Vertical Transportation), Metropolitan Acoustics (Acoustics)