2014 - 2016 / Chicago, Illinois

500 West Monroe Entrance & Building Lobby Renovation


Piedmont Office Realty Trust 2014 - 2016 / Chicago, Illinois




Corporate Interiors



Epstein's interior design team transformed the 12,000 square foot main entrance and building lobby at 500 West Monroe.


The transformation was driven by the building's owner, Piedmont Office Realty Trust, to make 500 West Monroe a more competitive building, attract new tenants and improve the building experience.The approach for the design was to be considerate of the existing architecture while creating a more inviting and activated space.


At the main entry Epstein replaced the heavy bronze framed glazing system with a new frameless, clear glazing system to create a more transparent affect while increasing natural light.In addition, a new custom light fixture as well as new granite pavers and signage grace the existing rotunda bringing it up to date.


In the building lobby, Epstein's design team replaced the light fixtures with recessed linear LED fixtures to provide a lighting experience of brightness and controllability. The existing vaulted wood ceilings were replaced with a backlit, stretched fabric ceiling panel, creating a lighter and more pleasing environment.Epstein also removed the onyx light box walls and replaced them with large clear glazed openings to bring in more natural light and connect the interior to the streetscape.


To further lighten the space and open up views, non-structural column enclosures in the lobby were reduced in volume.To energize and activate the newly refurbished space, the existing interior fountains and pools were removed to make way for new seating groups and furniture pieces.And to improve security sightlines, the new reception desk was relocated to a more centralized location and outfitted to accommodate the latest advances in technology.

The elevator vestibules were similarly updated to coordinate with the new building lobby.Lighting was improved, the bronze elevator doors and frames were refinished to stainless steel, and the elevator cabs received new lighting and finishes as well.To complete the new vision, Epstein partnered with Amy King of King Art Collective in commissioning artwork to harmonize with the interior architecture and enhance the visitor experience.


Epstein's design for 500 West Monroe has had an immediate economic impact for Piedmont.In late September, Motorola Solutions completed their move of 800 employees into approximately 150,000 square feet which had been vacant for an extended period of time.

Epstein's design for the space has achieved all our goals by creating a contemporary main entry as well as bright, inviting and activated lobby space. In addition, the team at Epstein did a wonderful job of bridging the gap between the two schools of thought of our tenants – those who wanted an updated version of the status quo and others that wanted a complete makeover. Epstein's designers were able to collaborate with these two forces and the end product is a space that both groups – and we, as owners -- are extremely happy with the end results.

Tom Prescott Executive Vice President, Midwest Region - Piedmont Office Realty Trust


Linda Kanoski, AIA, LEED AP
Associate Vice President, Senior Project Architect

John W. Kolb, IIDA, LEED AP
Vice President, Senior Project Manager