In early 2012, STUDIOS began test fits and strategic planning in support of the relocation of Cooley LLP’s Washington, DC office with the goal of creating a space that reflects Cooley’s personality and provides the office with a unique identity. The two-phase, 95,000 sf project’s challenges included a highly compressed schedule, desire to re-use existing infrastructure and a tight budget. A central public space wraps around a full building atrium and consists space of the reception areas, a flexible multipurpose room, meeting rooms and a café space on two levels, which are connected by a curving stairway. Artwork, some commissioned specifically for this space, is featured throughout the public areas and at key sightlines. The addition of the communicating stair, wide gallery space, and glass front informal meeting spaces helped to create a sense of connectivity throughout the space, visually connecting the practice areas to encourage interaction and collaboration and providing sightlines to daylight.
In 2015, Cooley expanded its operation, leasing adjacent space directly above the historic Warner Theater. The suite is distinguished by several unique components: massive steel trusses that capture the load from columns in the office floors above and transfer it to either side of the theater below, an existing mural at the north end of the suite, and a stunning view of Freedom Plaza and the Washington Monument to the southwest. STUDIOS wove Cooley’s new office space among the existing trusses, selectively enclosing and exposing them depending on programmatic needs: dramatic two-toned bookends for the entry and conference breakout area, storage nooks in private offices, and a branded blue exposed feature element at the west end of the suite. Diffuse light filters through the glass office fronts, bringing a pleasant glow to interior office areas. The employee “Chill Room” was positioned in the southwest corner, a democratic move to share the best daylight and views among all staff.