Work in style: The Foundry’s new look


As you can see from this concept illustration, exciting changes are coming to the atrium of The Foundry.

The Foundry, located in Charlotte’s Third Ward, has special meaning for the entire Beauxwright team. It was the first project we developed when we launched our company, and it’s still home base for us, with our office in Building 601.  

We always have an eye on improvements and enhancements to make the property more comfortable, functional and enjoyable for the businesses that also call The Foundry home. To transform the look of the two-story atrium in Building 619 -- the central building among the three -- we joined forces with designer Blaire Chastain, of Chastain and Company.

We asked Blaire to share her vision for the space, with new furniture and artwork that honor the heritage of this 100-year-old complex, while accommodating the technological needs of the modern workplace.  

“I took into consideration how people like to work, how many gather for meetings, and what type of amenities they look for in a comfortable work setting,” she says.  

Her new furniture choices for The Foundry include:

●     A bar area that seats up to 10 people.

●     A custom circular sofa at the entrance, with private laptop tables.

●     Booths and soft seating areas for small groups to socialize.

●     Unique half-round booths with round tables.

“I’ve worked to provide a home for each user of the space – whether they’re gathering for lunch, stopping to make a call or send an email, or need a bit of privacy to work on their laptop for a few hours,” Blaire explains. Taking into account the open, airy structure, she focused not just on the look of the atrium, but the sound of it.

“Each design element, down to the fabrics, finishes and artwork, is intended to mitigate and absorb sound,” she says. “The shape of the half-round booths encapsulates sound, and the overall layout of the soft seating helps to alleviate the travel of sound.”

Another significant enhancement brings in more power than ever:

●     Tenants and visitors will be able to plug in laptops, phones and other appliances throughout the space.

●     The half-round booths will have power run to their bases.  

●     The bar and booth structure will have power on top of the tables and bar.

As an additional design challenge, Blaire says she gave a great deal of thought to the selection of contextually appropriate, relevant art. “What is an atrium without a living green wall?” she asks. “The space was originally a metal foundry, so we wanted an industrial feel, but with a fresh twist. We partnered with The Savage Way, based in Charlotte and specialists in moss art. For the first time, they’re working with a muralist. The artist is painting gears onto the wall, with sparks appearing to fly behind the moss art. This dimensional, mixed-media approach is not your traditional office art!”

The color palette was similarly influenced by the legacy of The Foundry. The logo and many of the existing features in the atrium utilize orange to signify the fires that fueled iron production in the 1920s. “To complement the orange, I’ve introduced blue in the custom booths and furniture upholstery,” Blaire says. “I’m also bringing in rust, red and weathered gray. This palette provides a more modern perspective on industrial design. The mix of raw materials such as steel and wood in more modern shapes further expresses this theme.”

The Foundry’s transformation is scheduled to be completed in December. The Beauxwright team looks forward to seeing current tenants and new faces in a space designed to be welcoming, community-oriented and as unique as the property itself.

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