• TD Ameritrade is striving for its new headquarters to be known as a “sustainability icon.” Read more about the “green” building effort here.
• Photos: See more images of the building during a tour with company officials Tuesday.
• Video: Click here to see citizens comment on how the TD Ameritrade building has changed the area landscape.
The seafoam-green glass on the outside of TD Ameritrade's new Old Mill headquarters appears randomly dotted with clear rectangular windows.
But the pattern on the north, east, and west sides of the 12-story structure is intentional.
In an homage to the earliest days of stock trading via telegraph lines, TD Ameritrade executives and the company's St. Louis-based architecture firm arranged the clear windows so that the outside walls resemble strips of old-fashioned ticker tape.
Passers-by on West Dodge Road and Interstate 680 may not have recognized the simulated paper trading tape, said Del Reibold, the Omaha-based online brokerage's construction manager.
But the hope is that the company's investors and stockholders will appreciate the nod to the old days, when holes punched in the paper tape spelled out ticker symbols, prices and share volume.
“It's just a quirky little thing that most investors will understand,” Reibold said from atop the new 12-story office tower, which looks out from the Old Mill area, with views south to I-80 and east to the downtown Omaha skyline.
The pale green that dominates three sides of the building is the glass in its natural state, without the additional processes needed to eliminate the green tint. Office workers can see through the glass, and sensors adjust the amount of light depending on the time of day and the intensity of the light outside.
The south-facing side of the structure looks more traditional, with alternating bands of the opaque-looking glass and clear windows. The clear glass uses “light shelves” that extend from the building's exterior to reflect natural light into offices and meeting rooms on that side of the building.
“It's all open and was built with the associate experience in mind,” said Kim Hillyer, a company spokeswoman. “There are no corner offices, no CEO suite or anything like that. Everything is very equal, so all cubicles have access to natural light. Everybody looks out a window, and the offices are very standard and uniform.”
When illuminated at night, the completed headquarters is designed to stand out as the gem of the Old Mill and look “kind of like an ice cube,” Reibold said.
Reactions so far to the building's look, materials and ticker tape theme?
“The initial feedback has been not altogether positive,” said Joleen David, president of SKAR Advertising, just across the street. “I think initially people thought the north side of the building wasn't finished yet.”
But, for the most part, it is.
When told of the ticker tape theme, David was surprised. “Well, I can tell you that nobody has reported to me that that's what they think it looks like. I thought it had something to do with them going ‘green.'”
Leaving aside the headquarters' outer appearance, David said she's excited to have TD Ameritrade expand its presence in the Old Mill area.
“We love them, we're glad they're here, we're glad to have them as neighbors,” she said. “I just kind of missed the ticker tape association.”
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