In moving from Midtown Manhattan to the Meatpacking District, Sullivan, a brand engagement firm, sought an office design that would promote creativity and collaboration, represent their own vitality by embracing the spirit of renewal in the neighborhood and make use of the cinematic views of New York City afforded by the building’s floor-to ceiling glass. Every detail of the design reinforces Sullivan’s culture, including materials choices such as reclaimed wood to evoke the railroad ties of the highline, the raw but refined studio-like interiors, and the ceiling system, a highly inventive and visually complex solution at the heart of the space.
The design breaks the space into three conceptual zones: perimeter, core, and interstitial space or creative zone. The perimeter zone houses the various work stations in an open, non-hierarchical environment that provides uninhibited views of the city beyond and the High Line, which passes directly below. The core responds in the opposite way, turning inward, consolidating and concealing functional elements into a compact linear bar with inset casework.
The third conceptual zone comprises the interstitial space between perimeter and core including circulation and reception, pin-up alcoves, and several pods or break out workstations, each uniquely identified by stenciled graphics painted directly on the concrete floor. The primary feature is a milled drop ceiling constructed from lightweight MDF with a high gloss paint finish that floats above the circulation and reception areas. The mill pattern dilates to integrate lighting and fire suppression systems. Its pattern is a response to the grain and motion of the Highline below while also serving as a way finding device to direct clients by ‘swelling’ in size when in proximity to one of two conference rooms that enjoy expansive views of the Hudson River and the Empire State Building.