ROARK was commissioned by Noise212 Radio to design and manage the construction of their new headquarters in the heart of the NOMAD district of New York City.
Noise212 Radio is an online platform used to showcase some of the best DJs from around the world. Having had several temporary headquarters over the past few years, a permanent space was needed.
The space that Noise212 acquired was once home to a wholesale clothing store which had unexpectedly vacated the premises on 28th and Broadway in Manhattan, New York. This meant that when ROARK’s team first entered the space, it was in heavy disrepair. It needed to house both the radio station and a classroom for Noise212 apprenticeships, but the walls were falling apart, an old cooling system was hanging precariously from the ceiling and there were 3 layers of shoddy paneling over most of the useable wall space.
Amidst the rubble, JP Solis, founder and director of Noise212 asked ROARK’s team “What do you see?”
The whole space was clearly sectioned into 3 spaces. One area had to be the permanent location for setting up the broadcast equipment. Another would be designated as the teaching space and a central seating area would serve both as a meeting/lounge area and a buffer between the classroom and the broadcast studio.
For the broadcast area, a matte black cube was painted using the existing walls. It was left open facing the rest of the space in order to allow the performing DJ to interact with the crowd attending the broadcast. This creates a club/crowd energy for each performance despite the fact that the broadcast is being streamed digitally online. The broadcast becomes essentially invisible to the artist because the walls typically associated with a radio booth are nowhere to be seen.
Studio lighting was installed from the ceiling on a skyrail system allowing for easy repositioning of lighting to accommodate different DJ setups. A streaming server was also sourced out and set up to allow for a turnkey broadcasting solution.
For the rest of the space, a careful focus was placed on the ambiance lighting. It was carefully crafted so that when people enter the space, they immediately feel free to create in such a large airy space but at the same time, comforted by the way the light wraps around them.
For the central lounge, a centerpiece was needed to compliment the animated branding component developed for the space. ROARK hand-built, designed, and constructed a LED wall. It creates a club atmosphere at nighttime events, while serving a more sculptural purpose during sessions and day-to-day operations.
The animated brand content that is projected on the wall across from the seating area is based around the concept that no matter what sound is being pumped through the speakers, Noise212 Radio is always there to dance along with, enhance and inspire it. The animated elements were created by Shuhan Teoh with art direction from Adrian Letechipia.
When it came time to design the educational space, an emphasis was put on clean lines and airiness to allow for musical inspiration to flow.
Hand built record storage was designed to compliment the long window in the space while perfectly storing and preserving Noise212 Radio’s vinyl record library.
A wall mural was designed and hand cut out of black masking tape on-site by Shuhan Teoh with art direction from Adrian Letechipia. Inspiration for the piece was drawn from the bark of white birch trees. The lines emphasize the verticality of the ceiling, thus making the space feel much taller than it actually is.
Finally, custom desks were designed and built into the walls to create turntable and production workstations.
And finally a special thanks to everyone who helped us build this space from the ground up.