Union Trust Building

Prize Winner in Architectural Design / Restoration & Renovation
Firm LocationBoston, United States
CompanyElkus Manfredi Architects
Lead DesignerHoward F Elkus, FAIA
Design Team Elizabeth O Lowrey, IIDA, Principal; Ross Cameron, RIBA, Project Manager; CT Nguyen, Interior Designer

Built in 1918 in the heart of downtown Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the 667,000-square- foot Union Trust Building was in need of revitalization after many years of neglect. The client had a clear vision for the central role that the revitalized Union Trust Building could play in contemporary Pittsburgh life. The charge for designers was to reimagine what this extraordinary building could be – to make it a vibrant destination, and a place that would attract exciting retail and restaurant tenants, as well as offer flexible, modern Class-A office space with amenities that would make it among the most desirable downtown workplace locations for both innovation start-ups and traditional office tenants. At the ground-floor lobby, designers created a dramatic and beautiful entry and meeting space for the offices above, while faithfully restoring and respecting the original historic building. The atrium was transformed into a grand arrival space with a carpet pattern that reflects the design of the Tiffany dome above. As one ascends through the nine open levels, the carpet changes color, gradating from blue on the ground floor to gold/amber on the top floor. Thirty pieces of original art commissioned for the building, many using Pittsburgh and the Union Trust Building as their subjects.