Historical Garment Factory Gets Transformed into an Open Concept Design

Vocon repurposes and revitalizes a historical property for a company known to invest in preservation.

The completed design for an investment and preservation company, GBX Group, formerly Global X, sought a historical property to repurpose and revitalize for its new headquarters. Vocon worked to create an open office floorplan that still made space for meeting rooms and individual workspaces. With the desire of having the space look and feel transparent, the company’s values and the contemporary office feel in a historic property are highlighted.


When was the project completed?

How much space (SF)?
48,000 GSF

Was this new or renovated space?
Renovated- the building is a former garment factory built in 1913.

Describe workspace types.
The space is an open concept with designated meeting spaces, offices, and workstations on each floor. The team utilized enclosed glass and open floorplans to achieve this.

What kind of meeting spaces are provided?
There are a variety of spaces that work for different sizes, including a spacious conference room.

What are the projects location and proximity to public transportation and/or other amenities?
The property is located in the heart of downtown Cleveland and features easy access to several public transportation options.


Were there any special or unusual construction materials or techniques employed in the project?
The Vocon design team strategically designed the headquarters as a compilation of glass-encased and open work areas within a rehabilitated interior environment. Exposed wood structures and brick walls were the main elements that supported the design.

What products or service solutions are making the biggest impact in your space?
The building had uneven floors, twisted timber column lines, and an irregular perimeter, so Vocon adapted a precise engineering process and added layered material and steel to level the floors in order to make space work for a modern office space.

What kind of branding elements were incorporated into the design?
Each of the five floors features a custom mural that tells the GBX Group story and the history of the Garment District, communicating the company’s values and some of their most significant projects. Additionally, the Vocon team added a bar cart made out of a vintage sewing machine in homage to the building’s history. A sculpture of GBX’s logo was created out a massive mooring buoy.

What is the most unique feature of the new space?
The design team visually connected the multiple levels of office space in the three-story atrium with a zig-zagging steel staircase in the space to reflect the building’s industrial roots and the marriage of the building’s history and current use as a headquarters for an investment and preservation company.

Tell us more!
Vocon’s work on this project received a Merit Award from AIA Cleveland in the Architecture category and a Design award from AIA Ohio in October.

Images courtesy of Vocon

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