Ladau, AIA, of the architectural firm Hillier/Eggers, New York City, sees this as a commonsense trend.
But the drive toward increased community space, he adds, while warranted by better visual communication and the need for decompression, is hampered by economic reality: "The overriding problem is cost," Ladau explains.
"The problem with the concept is that the technology doesn't come cheap," notes Ladau. "And people have to come in after hours, like stage-hands in a theater, to get it ready for the next business day.
Hillier/Eggers' Ladau confirms the trend, pointing to the re-thinking and modernization of the Time-Life Reference Library as a good case study in floorplan re-engineering.
"The redesign paralleled Time-Life's move into the 21st century," explains Ladau. "The division would no longer be a library but an 'Editorial Resource Center' with data resources and on-line services.
"Where the offices for middle managers and clerical staff are getting smaller and smaller, the executive offices are growing and taking up the slack," notes Ladau. "The downsizing of space standards is hardly egalitarian."
Robert Ladau, president of New York City-based SLCE Facilities Management and Interior Design, sees it the same way.
Ladau says office occupancy costs represent 40 percent "of the cost of doing business." Pozos estimates a position salaried at $60,000 annually includes another $30,000 in costs for overhead, pension funds, and insurance.