We were commissioned to create a space that would bring new life (and a new tenant) to the vacant first floor in a 33-year-old rental office building. We responded by designing this free space in one corner of the floor. Because the building has central air conditioning, it was necessary to maintain airflow throughout. We researched various materials that would not interfere with airflow, such as perforated panels, mesh, and louvers while also thinking about how we could create a “transparent” atmosphere to encourage wide-ranging intellectual discussion in the space. The project’s title, ReBar, derives from “reinforcing bar,” the steel bars or mesh typically used to strengthen reinforced concrete. Ordinarily rebar is not visible on the surface, but in this project it encloses the space, serving both a functional and design purpose.
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