Perkins+Will/Eva Maddox Branded Environments
Sheila Kim-Jamet -- Interior Design, 5/1/2005 12:00:00 AM
Illustrating Haworth's sustainability initiatives as well as its office furniture, Perkins + Will/Eva Maddox Branded Environments created an eco-friendly redesign for its Chicago showroom—a sales center, conference facility, and flagship store, all rolled into one. Designers employed renewable materials such as cork, salvaged carpet tiles and tempered glass from the old showroom, and a raised floor system to contain some of the HVAC equipment. Allowing staff to control the temperature in their own work areas also reduces energy use. Principal Eva Maddox discussed the project with us.
How does this space promote the client's image?
EM: Our assignment was to help introduce the new brand strategy and initiatives, while demonstrating Haworth's evolution from a manufacturer of workstations to a solutions driver for workspaces. This concept integrated the space with the company's new products.
How did you conceive of the raised floor?
EM: It seemed natural to use the client's Tecrete Floor in its showroom—to demonstrate how the product can challenge convention and express a new idea. We also reclaimed underused space by installing the HVAC there.
What was your biggest challenge?
EM: Time. A 29,000-square-foot project was conceptualized and designed in seven weeks, and entirely gutted and rebuilt in a little more than two months.
Did you use any unconventional devices here?
EM: Many. We integrated communication technologies beneath the raised floor, clad the floor surface in a local Wisconsin dolomite stone, created a reflecting pool, and specified each element to meet LEED requirements.
And the most inventive use?
EM: The cork floors in the pavilion area and in a corridor, a wheat-board substrate, and backlit acrylic wall panels.
How did you meet the challenges?
EM: A team of architects, interior designers, product designers, brand-communications and graphics designers, LEED experts, contractors, and representatives—and a visionary client.