Location: Chicago, IL
Design Architect: Huron Design Group

HBK is an engineering firm that employs over 500 people with a focus on encouraging employee growth, diversity, and inclusion. They called on Forward Space to assist with updating and improving their Chicago office.

This project was a complete redesign of HBK’s space. All the walls were taken down to restructure their office to have a more collaborative, open, and welcoming layout that aligned with their core values. We began in 2020, despite all the delays that came with the spread of COVID-19, we were able to furnish their private offices, workstations, collaboration areas, reception desk, boardroom, kitchen, wellness areas, and filing areas in a timely and organized manner.

Along with the new furniture and layout, sunlight was also utilized as a tool to enhance the space. HBK’s office is at a garden level, so getting as much sunlight in as possible was an important consideration. An obstacle that risked preventing this was that a large section of their windows are at their restroom corridor, a space that they wanted visually separated from the café area next to it. Putting up a full height wall to divide the spaces would have completely cut off all the sunlight to the café space. To solve this problem, we hung up a beautiful cityscape of Steelcase acoustic screens in lieu of building a full height wall. The sunlight filters through the “windows” of the buildings giving the café a unique statement piece along with allowing them to have both sunlight and a division of their café and restroom spaces.