So A Tree Walks Into An Office…

I came across this unusual design of the offices of Pons and Huot on Treehugger. This layout has been dubbed “Forest Through the Table,” I assume by its designer, architect Christian Pottgiesser.The now-shared Pons and Huot office used to be industrial space, which explains the ceilings that are high enough to accommodate the Ficus-Panda trees that seem to sprout from the oak flooring.

Alex Davies, who wrote the piece on Treehugger, has mixed feelings, as do I. Those plexiglass domes over the workspaces are awful and feel completely out of sync with the otherwise open layout. On the other hand, I love the open light and the attempt to bring nature in to the office. You can’t argue with the fact that this would be a lovely place to work every day.

My real issue is with the cutouts around the tree trunks. They appear to precisely mimic the shape of the trunks themselves. A very pretty touch, and practical from a safety standpoint (no gaping hole to get stuck in or cause injuries), but are they going to work for the trees long-term? Can the holes be enlarged, if necessary, to accommodate the growing trunk?

It’s an interesting space, anyway, and I like the general direction it’s going. Let’s see how these trees are doing in a few years.

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