Jaffe Raitt Heuer & Weiss Offices
Inlaid wood doors with slotted windows restrict views in or out at eye level, but allow one to feel the full expanse and activity on the floor while maintaining privacy.
This move was the third major renovation and relocation that Neumann/Smith designed for the law firm, starting in 1980 when the firm occupied only a portion of a floor in the First National Building in downtown Detroit. With each major renovation, the firm integrated state-of-the-art technology and the most forward-thinking trends available at the time.
This most recent move had a real estate goal of increasing the head count while reducing the lease square footage. This was accomplished by challenging every department’s way of doing business and incorporating new ideas with regard to furniture, technology and protocol. A standard office size of 12’-0 x 14’-6 for all attorneys, senior partners and incoming associates alike, was a major catalyst in getting all departments to think “outside the box.” The “one size fits all” office has also proved to be a positive concept for recruitment.
Rather than having attorneys feud over them, all corner spaces were turned into conference rooms. Custom furniture gives each lawyer ample storage space. The attorney to secretary ratio of 9 attorneys to 4 secretaries is set up so that the clusters of secretarial space are positioned in the corner to allow a team approach with a view through the corner glass conference room for the team. Custom folded steel signing/in-out box shelves organize the individual secretarial stations and indirect light highlights these color coded corners.
The main entrance and public conference floor is accentuated with cherry veneer doors and paneling, a wood ceiling and aluminum and glass detailing. The conference floor has eleven conference rooms, varying in size, with full technology infrastructure including wireless access.