3M Unveils New Multi-Level Design Center
3M officially opened its new Design Center on Thursday. The 38,000-square-foot space is roughly four times the size of the prior studio and features, among other things, a fast prototyping lab and an interactive area called the “Design Hive.”
The maker of Scotch tape, Post-It Notes and other industrial supplies announced plans to build the studio in August of last year. 3M’s Design Center was built at the company’s Maplewood headquarters. In a release, 3M said the elements of the space’s contemporary design were “inspired by local and global culture.” A total cost of the project was not disclosed.
Eric Quint, who is 3M’s chief design officer and the one who lead the Design Center project, said last year that the redesign would “elevate design and propel dynamic opportunity [for 3M workers] to enhance everything from branding solutions to product innovation to sustainability and social impact.”
The focus of the new studio, 3M said, is to act as an incubator for cross-disciplinary projects, meaning designers, business partners and employees in its research and development sector are more encouraged to collaborate.
“Design thinking is about unlocking future value in partnership,” Quint noted.
Projects to be tackled within the workplace will be wide-ranging, from home and office products to automotive materials to digital healthcare solutions. According to 3M, the “Design Hive,” in particular, will be useful in bringing together individuals from all over the 3M campus or outside the company to discuss design concepts.
The Design Center also aims to be eco-friendly as it features energy-efficient climate control, lighting systems and recycled materials.
“The new studio reflects our culture of spontaneous collaboration, creativity and translation of insightful solutions that positively impact the world,” Quint said.
This is the second significant addition to 3M’s Maplewood headquarters this year. In March, the company unveiled a $150 million state-of-the-art, cross-disciplinary research and development facility.