Reimagining A Law Firm’s Workspace


Status: Completed Spring 2018

Boies Schiller Flexner (BSF), a globally recognized legal practice, has long operated with the agility and spirit of a startup while confined to the ill-fitting workplace of a more traditional law firm. The design team re-imagined their Washington, D.C. offices to align the built environment with the firm’s collaborative workstyle while fostering a uniquely equalitarian corporate culture.

To better understand the client’s requirements, the designers engaged in an intensive workplace strategy process, including observation analysis, activity tracking, workshops and surveys. The findings argued that the firm could see an increase in productivity and occupancy by neutralizing hierarchy, open desking support staff, along with some attorneys, and introducing new varieties of spaces that would diversify the office landscape.

The design team transformed the historic model, changing corner offices into cafés and libraries. These community spaces now claim the the best daylight and views, promoting greater connectivity and improved job performance through knowledge sharing.

An open core unites three levels of enclosed collaborative areas and work pods with shared offices beyond, increasing participation while maintaining acoustical separation and minimizing distraction. The defining elements of the space allow occupants to focus individually, collaborate with colleagues, host clients, and recruit new talent, supporting a variety of workstyles and promoting opportunities for growth.

Photos by David Sundberg and Judy Davis.