Haworth's New York Showroom: Green and Gorgeous

Not too long ago, this was a dumpy downtown airline ticket office across the street from Grand Central Station. Then the office furnishings company Haworth, with Perkins+Will/ Eva Maddox Branded Environments, turned it into 30,000 square feet of the newest, cleanest and greenest showroom in New York. We visited it on opening day.

It didn't look like much but it had great bones, a thirty foot ceiling and stunning arched windows, albeit not much of a view into the side of the elevated Park Avenue.


It's going for LEED gold, doing everything they can given the limitations of space that was built in 1925. They took it back to the concrete and installed all new systems, using a Haworth raised floor system.

On top of that they have installed the latest systems with movable walls, recycled materials and all Greenguard certified for air quality.

They point out that it is a lot more efficient to build this way.

You can't change the building but you can go for every point possible inside, which they do.

It a remarkable transformation from a worn-out dump into one of the most gracious, spacious and beautifully detailed showroom spaces in town; it is also more proof that green design can be drop-dead gorgeous, that you don't have to sacrifice design for sustainability. ::Haworth

From the Press release:

In 2004, Haworth committed to develop its facilities in accordance with the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) Green Building Rating System. The company has since certified or registered seven projects, meeting the goal of silver or higher ratings for manufacturing facilities and gold ratings for showrooms. Built in partnership with Perkins +Will | Eva Maddox Branded Environments and Turner Construction, the New York showroom will be one of the few LEED-CI Gold spaces in the city.

Located in the heart of Manhattan, at the intersection of 42nd Street and Park Avenue and directly opposite Grand Central Terminal, Haworth transformed the second floor formerly occupied by the Manhattan Satellite Airline Terminal. The space showcases the company’s products and presents progressive new ideas in sustainable design and adaptable workspaces. The design of the showroom reflects the New York market and local trends – office space that is predominantly professional corporate offices and law firms. Consistent with other Haworth showrooms, the space is constructed of moveable walls, raised access floors and modular furniture. Features include:
30 foot ceilings and windows provide access to daylight
Saturated, pure and straightforward colors used as a dominant accent focus
Surface treatments, from smooth to textured, provide tactile appreciation through an array of finishes and woven materials
Materials and textures, highlighted by the interplay of light, provide reflectance and translucency
Natural wood and veneers in a variety of tones, from medium to dark
Private offices and open spaces to demonstrate both individual and collaborative workstyles for today’s needs and future applications
A building characterized by a blend of Italian architectural styles with a classic terra cotta brick exterior, designed by York & Sawyer and completed in 1923.

The New York showroom will immerse clients in a world-class experience with several areas of special focus: global seating gallery, wood salon, sustainability lab and global collaborative resources.

The global seating gallery highlights Haworth’s international strength in seating, showcasing executive, café, ergonomic, guest, side and lounge solutions with multiple design and functional choices. These products represent seating solutions designed by sharing the best practices in performance, ergonomics, sustainability, design, materials and manufacturing processes from around the world. The adjacent design resource area contains upholstery and trim samples to assist in material and color selections.

The showroom’s wood salon provides a dedicated space to visualize and understand the variety of wood and veneer options available from Haworth. This space houses multiple samples from raw veneer to finish samples and edge details. Viewing chambers with multiple lighting options represent actual client spaces. Through presentation, discussion and hands-on activities, the client will understand Haworth’s approach to sustainable forestry practices.

Haworth’s sustainability lab is a dedicated space to assist clients, designers and architects with meeting their sustainable goals. This hands-on space contains LEED information, raised flooring and underfloor air demonstrations, modular construction vs. conventional construction statistics and movable wall demonstrations. "

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