Great Lakes APG
Ferris State University Center
18 February 2019
Wayne State University Student Center
18 February 2019
DescriptionThe pairing of a modern product line set against the architectural backdrop of historic ceilings, wood floors and dramatic replications of original wood arched windows makes the new home of Great Lakes Architectural Products Group (APG) at 1301 Broadway in Detroit an original and imaginative workplace environment. A regional manufacturers’ representative and consulting firm focused on architectural products and building elements, APG selected the perfect space for their business to flourish. Not wanting the design to detract from the main focal point, the architectural products of the company, finishes were kept neutral. The tin ceiling was painted white, and wood floors were simply refinished to their original hue. A raised floor system was utilized to help the electrical distribution of power to workstations and conference rooms. Our floor plan was able to accommodate APG’s modular wall systems and lend itself to future product lines as they hit the market. Project challenges included maxing out ceiling heights to accommodate glass wall partition systems, yet allowing the mechanical infrastructure to navigate the space. During the course of the project, plans had to continually evolve and respond to the accommodation of major ductwork (rated shaft assemblies) traveling vertically through the space to accommodate venting requirements for a first floor restaurant tenant. The use and placement of transparent elements (APG product line) and careful placement of lighting created a “gallery” feel, as seen when you walk through the space, but also perceived from the street level below. The attractive replicated wood windows contribute to a view into the depth of the space. From the kitchen area to the open offices and conference areas, Neumann/Smith was able to acclimate prototypical APG design elements (kitchen millwork, casual seating, and glass moveable sliding partitions) into a historic setting with new purpose.