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Webinar: Designing for Health in HDR’s New Corporate Headquarters – From Planning through Evaluation

When: February 24, 2022
Time: 12:00pm Pacific
Price: $65 Individual View/$150 Group View

1 unit EDAC continuing education
1 unit AIA continuing education
IDCEC credit also available**

CEU forms available for download during webinar


This webinar is free to our Affiliate+ members.


The typical employee spends over 2,000 hours per year in the workplace. The impact of their time in this built environment – on their health and wellbeing – presents both challenges and opportunities to re-imagine daily work life and design for health.

Hear the story of global architecture and engineering firm HDR’s bold endeavor to design, build and then measure the effects and outcomes of their new headquarters, and its contribution to the creation of a vibrant and resilient mixed-used community in Omaha, Nebraska, USA. Originally a horse-racing track, new development creates diverse opportunities for social engagement, healthy living, eating and shopping, and outdoor activities. 

The headquarters building itself was also designed with health promotion in mind, achieving Fitwel 3-Star certification. It offers ample access to natural light for all, spacious workstations, a variety of work space types to accommodate individual and collaborative activities, active stairs, bicycle storage and showers, and many other amenities. 

In order to assess the effects of the new work environment on employees, HDR conducted a natural experiment with pre- and post-measurement of the headquarters and two control sites in other cities. They’ll share the story of the new neighborhood and workplace development, along with the findings from this groundbreaking study, providing ideas and insights applicable to healthcare environments of all types.


Learning Objectives

  • Articulate design strategies for corporate office site and building environments that can influence employee health behaviors including sedentary behavior and physical activity.
  • Describe the results from a natural experiment that investigated the effects of a new workplace design on employee health behaviors.
  • Understand the importance of objective measurement and appropriate analysis methods in studies of human outcomes.
  • Explain the potential impacts of healthy workplace design on populations of adult office workers.


Presenting Faculty

Jeri Brittin, PhD, Director of Research, HDR

Dr. Jeri Brittin is a public health research scientist who plans and conducts research across facility types, including schools, workplaces, health and behavioral facilities and communities. She leads the research team to uncover design outcomes to inform future facilities. Among her many skillsets, Jeri is proficient in strategy development, research design, quantitative and qualitative analysis, systems science and methods and measurements. Combining a degree in design with a background encompassing industries such as technology, arts, financial services, academia, marketing and design, Jeri is passionate about leveraging design to achieve strategic outcomes and measuring those outcomes in order to document change.


Francesqca Jimenez, MS, Senior Research Strategist, HDR

Francesqca believes the natural and built environments have profound effect on human behavior, well-being and productivity and is passionate about creating a more beautiful, healthy and sustainable world. In her role as a researcher, she studies how the built environment impacts the people who use spaces and plays a key role in the development and integration of research initiatives. Francesqca assists in developing approaches to inform and advance designs that achieve targeted outcomes while testing those approaches empirically. Other responsibilities include developing data collection methods, writing research plans and protocols, documenting results and conducting quantitative and qualitative data analysis.


Michaella Wittmann, LEED Fellow, ENV SP, Director of Sustainability and Resiliency, HDR

As the founder and director of our sustainability program, Michaella has been a leader in the sustainability and green building industry for 20 years. A strong proponent of matching sustainable strategies to the goals and characteristics of each project, she has worked closely with a multitude of clients to balance environmental, economic, and social equity goals. Michaella was one of the first individuals in the country to receive her credentials as a LEED AP as well as one of the first to become an Envision Sustainability Professional. She has worked on numerous LEED projects, written sustainable guidelines for government agencies and organizations, trained over 3,000 people in various aspects of sustainability, and integrated sustainability into multi-million dollar infrastructure projects.