Valerio Dewalt Train Associates worked closely with Zenith Corporation as they planned the transition in their operations from a core business in manufacturing to a core business in the research and development of consumer electronic products. This 50,000 square foot interior was designed to house a staff of one hundred electronic engineers, support staff and senior corporate executives.
The facility provides for enclosed electronic and wet lab spaces in the building core surrounded by open office areas. The open office areas are divided into quarter floor zones to keep an intimate scale. Ceilings in these areas are high with indirect lighting. All open office areas have natural light from two directions. A light shelf is provided at the head of the windows for the full perimeter of the building to reflect light deep into the offices and reduce artificial lighting costs.
This light shelf serves a dual function around the core of the building, supporting the tel-data-signal distribution system. This system provides for the distribution of digital test, satellite, off-air and HDTV television signals from a central studio to all engineering workstations in addition to data and phone. The system is designed to allow constant modification and reconfiguration by the engineering staff.
The lobby and reception space is divided into functional areas by translucent glass planes with a suspended translucent ceiling. Views through the lobby feature Zenith products by allowing direct and diffuse glimpses of video screens distributed throughout the space. The cafeteria features a “Radio Wall” display of early Zenith products manufactured between 1912 and 1960.