The design rejuvenates and links two existing 1970s Brutalist buildings into one freestanding, trophy-class office building along 16th Street in downtown Washington, D.C. HOK’s concept pays respect to the historic corridor while introducing contemporary elements.
An all-glass curtain wall system accentuates the exterior limestone chosen to complement nearby buildings. Tension cables outfitted with a watering system allow evergreen vines to grow vertically along the curtain wall, providing occupants with immediate views of greenery and nature. The irregular structural bays of each building are cloaked by new west and south facades that create a unified design expression.
A three-dimensional, floor-to-ceiling sculptural wall greets people entering the building lobby. The team fabricated the solid basswood feature wall by using Computer Numerical Control technology optimized for efficient material use and installation.
A monumental stair floating within a new two-story atrium balances the fluid, dynamic sculptural wall while seamlessly connecting the previously separate building lobbies. This connective tissue is mirrored in the front plaza where an aluminum-perforated element carves through the landscape and links the main and secondary building entrances.
A new level of tenant space replaces two mechanical penthouses on top of the existing building. Set back from the main facade, this penthouse level accommodates public and private rooftop terraces with views of the White House.