Innovative Architectural Design at the Steelcase Showroom
Steelcase Concept Showroom at NeoCon, Chicago, Illinois
John Hamilton, Designer
Fabricator: Evert Binke, Coremax
Innovative Meeting Space
- Steelcase, a leading global manufacturer of office furniture and environments, wanted to create and display an innovative piece of contemporary architecture at NeoCon 2005.
- To inspire conversation about their company, they designed a concept meeting space – a yurt, modelled after portable tents used by nomadic people of Asia.
- Project designer John Hamilton built the circular, domed meeting space, or yurt structure, offering a unique solution to the transient nature of work and the need to huddle around an idea.
- Specifying a durable material with the ability to be formed virtually seamlessly into the curved and monolithic shell of the conceptual yurt.
- Identifying a versatile material with the innate strength and depth to withstand patterned holes envisioned in the middle of the structure.
- Securing a visually inviting material that would enhance the overall design and create a welcoming feel for the gathering space.
- Hamilton chose DuPont™ Corian® solid surface to wrap the outside of his structure because it could be thermoformed to create a beautifully curved shell.
- Using computer technology to create a design template, identical horizontal holes were cut in the middle of the Corian® shell using a CNC routing process. The holes allow those outside the yurt to tell when it is occupied and those inside the yurt to be able see out.
- “We identified materials that convey luxury; rich leather, fine wood, precision metals, hard stones, and Corian®. We chose Corian® for its tactile sense and its ability to be formed into monolithic architectural volumes of different sizes and shapes,” said Hamilton.
- The virtually seamless nature of Corian® allowed the conceptual shape and smooth surface of the design to become a reality for attendees to see and touch.
- Corian® resists chips, scratches, cracks, stains and is a renewable material because marks can be removed easily to restore it to its original condition.
- Corian® is available in a wide range of colors and aesthetics.