Nokia Chicago Wins 2006 Award

Christy Ullo
Faithful+Gould was selected as the Project Manager from inception through completion of the new Nokia Flasgship Store on Michigan Avenue, a shoppers paradise in Chicago. Following a successful completion of the store in June 2006, Faithful+Gould entered the project into the MidWest Construction Awards for 2006, and it won Best Interior Design/Fitout.

Subsequently Nokia has retained the services of Faithful+Gould Chicago to continue Project Management services for their flagship stores in Mexico City, Sao Paulo and other capital projects in Los Angeles.

Nokia Store Chicago
New Nokia Store in Chicago


Below is an article that appeared in the December issue of MidWest Construction magazine:

Project of the Year: Interior Design/Fitout

The global consumer product company Nokia wanted a retail presence on Chicago's Michigan Avenue.

The 5,000-sq.-ft. space for selling cells phones sounds simple at first, but the stakes are high when a single market share point could mean hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue.

In addition, the Magnificent Mile location represented the refining of a world-wide rollout of flagship stores that are an integral component of Nokia's brand building strategy.

A team that was global in nature was put together, including those located in Helsinki, London, Amsterdam, Singapore and cities throughout the United States.

The team expanded the use of the space while reducing the cost of the project by more than $1 million, and the store was completed on time and within budget.
Local Project, Global Rollout
Part of a global rollout, the aim of the store was to immerse customers in Nokia's brand.

The design incorporates a cross between a nightclub and high-end designer store and uses a lot of colors, sounds and images to create a customer experience.

The building housing the store, which dates to the 19th Century, had previously housed a Timberland. Limited space in the basement, existing staircases and redundant mechanical equipment meant the conditions were challenging for Nokia's prototype design.

Light-emitting-diode panels line the walls with different color scenes. Seamless visual displays work with audio surround from the LCD screens, and high-end wood finishes are throughout the store.
Text messages can be sent between the cell phones on display and the LCD screens. Pop-ups on the screen allow information about the phone just picked up.

Nokia's own designer brand, Vertu, basks in its own stylish surroundings in painted glass.

Other obstacles included implementing a foreign, high-tech design against the backdrop of local codes and regulations.

Jury Comments: "We like the colored walls. In retail, it is all about image. It's a step above the rest. In a store like that, you've got to step up the atmosphere but not be a circus. They succeeded. It's the antithesis of a Wal-Mart space. In addition, it's just a nasty spot for construction."


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