IATSE 873 Offices

IATSE (the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees and Moving Picture Technicians), was originally founded in 1893. It is the union representing a wide range of people who work behind the scenes to help produce film and video production.

Having recently acquired a stand-alone warehouse building, IATSE 873 approached Taylor Smyth Architects for a creative design and retrofit that would allow them to combine functions that had been spread across several buildings - to accommodate their staff and provide training space for new and existing members, as well as to create a facility that speaks to who they are and to their pride in what they do.

The front of the building will be removed and replaced by a new façade of Trespa phenolic panels. Resembling planks of various wood types, the new screen appears to cut away to create a dramatic glazed opening into the building, an abstract reference to a stage proscenium. It also indirectly references the spirit of what IATSE does – the creation of illusion with a resourceful use of materials. Along the sides of the building, new windows will be added to bring natural light deep into the floorplate.

The many types of craftspeople who together make up the totality of IATSE 873 are each named by trade on the reception wall to celebrate their participation. The majority of the office area is open plan, with the steel bones of the building exposed and floating acoustic ceilings provide localized intimacy. The Call Centre, the heart of IATSE, will occupy the centre of the workspace. It is partially defined by an open wood stud wall that alludes to the construction of film and television sets.

New mechanical and electrical systems, along with additional thermal insulation, were introduced. Early on in the design, a sustainable design study was undertaken to analyze potential energy conservation savings. Multiple options were conducted on an energy model to determine upfront costs and payback periods. This helped determine the optimal mechanical systems, along with lighting control strategies, and passive design measures.


The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees and Moving Picture Technicians


Interior Design / Retrofit


19,000 sq. ft.


Completed, 2016


Taylor Smyth Architects