Holistic Workplace for YMCA RF

MKDA has designed a holistic workplace for the YMCA Retirement Fund, a pension fund established in 1922 that currently has over 90,000 participants. The 52,000-square-foot workplace is situated on the 19th Floor at Silverstein Properties’ 120 Broadway, a 38-story National Historic Landmark.

The design concept was based on the Fund’s mission to empower YMCA employees to achieve economic security, resulting in loyalty to the YMCA Movement, together with the YMCA mission nationwide to help individuals achieve healthy spirit, mind and body.

“YRF wanted its employees involved in the design process, so an executive committee of 12 employees reviewed design mockups to ensure a modern workplace that would support employees’ health, wellness and productivity,” noted MKDA President Michael Kleinberg.

Meeting the organization’s requirement for formal and casual gathering areas for board meetings, special events, luncheons, training and lectures, MKDA designed a boardroom and a divisible multipurpose room with adaptable furniture, a Modernfold wall and advanced for audio-visual technology. The office also features a café with banquet seating and a 30-foot-long custom mural of the New York skyline and a gym on a floating floor with vibration isolators.

Work areas capitalize on natural light and provide superior ergonomic and functional design benefitting employee wellbeing. Perimeter offices with glass walls and wood doors, as well as low- and high-rise workstations with doors create an airy and open environment. Ergonomic task seating, accessory rails and file storage keep surfaces uncluttered.

The elevator lobby is detailed with glossy white architectural paneling punctuated by blue back-painted glass panels and dramatic circular light fixtures, while the reception area features a textured stone reception desk, patterned glass signage and vivid blue upholstery and area rug, custom made by Jamie Stern. Both spaces feature rich wood floors.

“Branding the space was essential to demonstrating the Fund’s high standards, tradition and principles of wellbeing,” added MKDA Director of Design Daniel DeSiena. “The brand’s blue color, intended to convey financial strength, stability and security, was used as an accent color throughout the space.”

In addition to highlights of blue, the workplace features a fresh and modern tone established through the use of glossy white finishes and golden brown toned wood furnishings. Wood floors and ceilings add counterpoint and imbue the office with tradition, richness and warmth.