The new offices for SOM in New York City were designed to reflect the firm’s cultural evolution, which focuses on flexibility and collaboration. The space is almost entirely open with very few partition walls, which allows for a consistent and uninterrupted ceiling plane. The client was interested in achieving aggressive energy reductions while also developing a lighting strategy that would provide good visual conform and help preserve views outward at night. To accomplish both of these goals, double-headed low-brightness LED gimbal accent lights with flood optics and soft focusing lenses were integrated into specially designed service bands that create a consistent and even field of lighting throughout. To aid with future flexibility, all of these fixtures were installed with digitally addressable drivers that would allow for changes to control zones depending on how spaces may transform over time.

A double-height town hall helps to take advantage of substantial daylight, but also has discreetly integrated LED track lighting that can be used for special presentations or lectures that the office may host. The materials library is located on one of the prime corners of the office and comes replete with KETRA lighting that allows the librarian and design team to evaluate materials under a variety of different lighting conditions.

The core is treated as a communal space, in such that many of the walls can be used for storage or to pin up materials for display or review. LED wall washer trackheads are used to highlight these display walls in the lobby while linear LED wallwashers line niches more commonly used for day-to-day reviews. The cores are also the only place in the project with enclosed rooms. Here you find spaces like small phone rooms and large conference rooms. These rooms take on a warmer material palate of cork in contrast to the light, open spaces. The lighting emphasizes this strong contrast in design but also needed to support functions such as meetings, video conferencing, and project reviews. A continuous luminous LED tube with 360-degree provides general illumination while a continuous linear LED wallwasher runs around 3 sides of the rooms to wash the walls and provide additional ambient light for presentation and direct light for pin-ups.


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