A confidential technology firm with offices globally in the U.S., Europe, Asia and the Middle East, recently leased 232,000 square feet over seven floors-the top five and two at the base-in a 48-story tower in New York City’s Times Square.
Global architecture firm Gensler, which designed the firm’s colorful Los Angeles headquarters, was again tapped to create an interior design for the new Times Square location. Digital technology factored prominently in shaping the workplace experience. Planar was engaged to supply video wall technology and specifically, Planar® CarbonLight™ CLI Series LED video wall displays to create unique installations for the 57th floor elevator lobby and a social and meeting space on the 58th floor penthouse level.
Audiovisual and technology consulting and design firm Waveguide oversaw the installation of the Planar CarbonLight CLI Series LED video walls. The 57th floor lobby features a 25-foot-long, 4-foot-high, wall-mounted LED video wall that wraps around a 90-degree corner and seamlessly blends with a 22-foot-long, 6-footwide LED video wall mounted on the ceiling. The 58th floor space incorporates a ceiling-mounted LED video wall that is 20-feet-long and 5-feet-wide.
Ross Cunningham, Waveguide principal and director of Southwest operations, said the flexibility of design options and the ability to accommodate custom layouts were important features of the Planar CarbonLight CLI Series for the project. With the lobby LED video wall corner, Cunningham said early discussions focused on deciding between a curved or a sharp edge. “The Planar CarbonLight CLI Series was suited for either design,” he said. “Ultimately, we selected a sharp edge based on design and costs, and the 2mm edge of the Planar CarbonLight CLI Series exceeded our design requirement.”
Integrating the lobby LED video wall presented key design challenges and required Waveguide to coordinate the three axes of displays with many existing and new building devices. “With the top display acting as the ceiling, we had to create a plenum barrier and incorporate cutouts for sprinklers, fire strobes, lights and speakers,” Cunningham said. “We also had to ensure the LED corner would be protected from people walking by or pulling rolling luggage. Planar-designed cladding was developed to minimize damage to the electronics. It was great working with Planar’s Custom Solutions Team. We are using a product with flexible options on a custom mount, and the ability to provide additional cladding resulted in a complete and impactful solution.”
Gensler Design Director Chris Mitchell said the new office design captures the vibrancy of the city street below and establishes a connection to the firm’s Los Angeles headquarters. “Video capture and showcasing digital content were huge hits in Los Angeles-that same kind of energy had to be a part of the New York City space.”
Mitchell said, “As the main arrival lobby for the New York office took shape, the entire team-including the client, Gensler, Waveguide and Planar-collaborated on creating the ultimate, wow-inducing, ‘welcome to the bright lightsbig city’ moment. The result does not disappoint in the least. The floor-to-ceiling, multi-faceted LED displays create a dynamic backdrop as one enters the main gathering and orientation space. It instantly envelopes guests in the Broadway energy of this Times Square address.”
Directly above, in the social and meeting area on the 58th floor, the ceiling LED canvas is a nod to the building’s penthouse location, complete with a setting that makes one feel as though they’ve stepped squarely in the clouds, according to Mitchell. “The cumulative effect of both floors is a fluid flow of content that streams seamlessly between both client-facing portals,” he said. “The messaging is at once entertaining and engaging.”
About the Planar CarbonLight CLI Series
Featuring patented carbon fiber frames and a modular design, Planar CarbonLight CLI Series LED video wall displays are uniquely lightweight, thin and strong. Refined mechanical construction gives the displays the versatility to fit a wide range of different applications, including free-standing, hanging, wall-mounted and ceiling-mounted installations. Front-side installation and service shrink the overall video wall footprint and servicing space needed behind the wall, making it simpler to fit in more spaces than other LED video wall solutions.