2 North Riverside Plaza
11,000 square feet

Looking to connect its future to the past, Vail Systems, a communications software developer, found a perfect home in the former Chicago Daily News pressroom. The once industrial space has been transformed into a collaborative environment that inspires innovation. Unique structural elements organize functional requirements. Staff is located in large reconfigurable areas, while meeting spaces are organized under mezzanines and catwalks. The central focus is a meeting room under a mezzanine that is encased in charred wood planks and tinted glass with black frames, providing strong contrast to the white space. Limited daylight presents a challenge, but bright and reflective materials are introduced so the space is not solely dependent upon artificial light. Ambient reflections from the high gloss concrete floor enliven the space. Red metal coil drapery cascading down from the 20’ high ceilings defines lounge areas without restricting natural light or creating visual disruption. Warm furniture finishes provide an element of contrast against a neutral industrial finish palette. While focused on supporting Vail’s future success, the design employs rich historical elements with meeting areas named in honor of communication pioneers. Photos of the old pressroom are also layered onto glazed partitions providing privacy while retaining lightness. Vail's new office embraces history while supporting its dreams.


$75 psf build-out from raw space
Significant millwork & glass upgrades
Exposed structure and building systems

$25 psf furniture budget
Teknion workstations

2015 IIDA RED Award, People's Choice
2015 IIDA RED Award, Small Office

Steve Hall/Hedrich Blessing