• Executive and administrative offices • 100 open office workstations • Conference rooms • Break room • Training room • Compact storage file room • Bid room
On Manhattan’s west side, Schindler Elevator Corporation consolidated multiple New York City offices on the fourth floor of a 1940’s former dairy building. The consolidation allows the company, for the first time, to make a single identifiable work place for all one hundred of their New York City employees. A modest budget informed a spartan approach that was both a familiar Swiss aesthetic and assisted in meeting the company’s aggressive schedule. The design creates a distinctive environment of slipping walls, ceilings, floors and columns, in a three dimensional composition, that is expressive of the product and service provided by Schindler- vertical transportation.
The interior is created with inexpensive painted drywall and indirect fluorescent lighting. The accent red paint used to highlight the shaft-like columns, lobby and core walls is Schindler’s corporate color which is appropriated from the Swiss national flag. All other surfaces and furnishings are purposefully left neutral in color and texture. Translucent acrylic resin boxes are judiciously introduced as lobby furnishings: a reception desk, a coffee table, a bench and lights. Internally illuminated, these acrylic resin boxes appear like elevator shafts piercing through the floor and ceiling planes.
Executive offices, conference rooms, training rooms and break rooms surround the perimeter. Interior walls of translucent glass at the perimeter offices allow daylight into the center of the floor. Internally, open workstations are arranged with views to the perimeter windows and the city beyond. Existing concrete columns on a 22 foot grid form the organizational structure to the open workstations. The ceiling on either side of concrete columns is pulled free to enhance the illusion that the column is penetrating or moving through space like the shaft of an elevator.
Inspired by Schindler’s motto, “people moving people” , the design explores the notion of displacement and movement by physically separating the floor, wall and ceiling from each other thereby creating floating or suspended planes in motion. Economical interior materials; such as, painted drywall, resin panels, recyclable carpet tile, bamboo flooring and acoustical ceiling panels make the project affordable and sustainable. These economical materials are detailed in a clear, well balanced and un-ornamented manner reflective of Swiss engineering.