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Boston Consulting Group (BCG) garnered the 2017 ENR New York Region Best Project for its inventive 193,000-square foot headquarters at 10 Hudson Yards. Lilker Associates, teaming with Gardiner & Theobald, Gensler and Structure Tone, provided mechanical, electrical and fire/life safety engineering services for the project. The decidedly “un-corporate” space was honored in the Interior/Tenant Improvement category for innovation, aesthetic design, functionality and safety, among other criteria.
Echoing the global management consulting firm’s mission to challenge established thinking and drive transformation, BCG’s new space consolidates the group’s 500-plus employees in a radically different work environment. Central to the strategy is the architecture’s “collision coefficient” which seeks to maximize the number of unplanned encounters among its talented consultants, promoting connectivity and collaboration.
The open-floor plan space occupies six upper-level floors in the 52-story tower and features two main staircases for the lower and upper stacks, communal “landing zones,” a hot-desking system that eliminates assigned seating, and a large centrally located town hall space and café with views of the High Line. The magnitude of the open staircases and varying ceiling configurations required extensive coordination and design creativity on the part of Lilker’s MEP engineers, according to Senior Associate Robert Trovato.
Tech and teamwork
Advanced and ubiquitous technology to empower employees to connect, collaborate and create fluidly throughout the space necessitated a high degree of synchronization for the design team. Systems include softphones instead of traditional hardware-based handsets, state-of-the-art video and audio capabilities in all conference rooms accessible from laptops or iPhones, a custom room reservation app, and a 24 by 6 ft. laser phosphor display screen with touch-enabled canvas.
The fast-track project was designed and built in approximately one year, with BCG taking occupancy in late November 2016. “A full-out, seamless team effort” enabled the quick turnaround, noted Owner’s Representative Keith Murray, senior director of Gardiner & Theobald. Design was completed using BIM, which aided coordination across all trades during the design phase and facilitated the submittal process in the construction phase. Lilker’s energy engineers were involved with design of systems for the pending LEED Silver certification under USGBC’s newest LEED v4 rating system.
[Photography credit: Garrett Rowland]
[Design architect: Gensler