Firm Credit : SGA
Ruder Finn is an international public relations company headquartered in New York City. Prior to occupying their current offices, staff was spread between multiple locations. The project brought the New York operations into one 40,000 sf facility conveniently located near their former offices. 425 E. 53rd was a furniture warehouse prior to being transformed into an open work space environment spanning five floors.
Transforming the low occupancy warehouse into a high occupancy office space required significant improvements to the HVAC, Electrical, Plumbing and Life Safety Systems. The project was permitted after the adoption of the 2014 codes which incorporates energy conservation standards as well. Balancing the infrastructure improvements against preserving the character of 100 year plus building was a design challenge the team embraced.
Adaptive re-use reduces demolition and optimizes existing building components. The team targeted demolishing as little as possible. Existing wood beams, columns and floors were preserved by using the Heavy Timber designation in the building code. 12’-14’ wood ceilings remained visible by using an energy efficient ductless VRF system served by equipment placed on the roof. Office enclosures were covered by low lids to allow the air and light to flow through the space.