For the interior renovation of Societe Generale’s office space on the 38th floor of 190 S. LaSalle St., Chicago, designers sought to emphasize the arch of the barrel-vaulted window casings by incorporating converse rectilinear architecture within the space. The straight lines of the office fronts and other architectural details offset and emphasize the window casings. A mix of wood and glass allows a degree of visual privacy for the office dwellers, while providing clear views and natural day-lighting for employees seated at work stations in central work areas.

Societe Generale

The office fronts make a smooth, flush transition between the walnut veneer door and the full-height wood side panel. This was achieved by detailing the side panels to be the same thickness as the doors, and by using hidden hardware in the pivot doors instead of ball-bearing hinges.

Key Players

Owner: Societe Generale, New York, N.Y.
General Contractor: Clune Construction Co., Chicago
Design Firm: Ted Moudis Associates, Chicago

The client wanted to have a strong identity and a secure entrance, yet required an unmanned reception area. This was addressed with illuminated signage and creative millwork that allows visitors to enter the foyer, dial their host, and wait in comfort to be brought to the office space.

The entry’s wood and glass details set the tone for the firm. A substantial wood plinth houses an inset illuminated sign, creating depth and volume in the space.

The firm’s two internal groups called for separate team zones for working, yet also required common spaces for collaboration. The office is laid out to provide both. In addition, it places the boardroom and small conference room near the entry, separated from the rest of the office space, thereby creating a clear distinction between public and internal spaces.