WASHINGTON, D.C. | 16,000 s.f. | 2008

Planned Parenthood Federation of America’s (PPFA) Washington, DC office was moving from an historic mansion to a mid-block modern office building. New leadership at PPFA stressed the idea of openness, transparency and teamwork. The change in building meant that the staff could work better as a single community focused on a common mission instead of the separate, independent cells.

Experiencing the new space begins with a simple, clean environment with bright objects that anchor the main areas of the lobby. The main work area is a large office landscape bound by a perimeter of offices. The open design utilizes glass panels and sharp colors to pull the eye through the space, yet there is complete privacy when seated at a workstation. PPFA was also concerned that being on the 3rd floor of a mid-block building meant that they would not have as much natural light as their corner building allowed. The perimeter wall of the space is a conventional wall with simple sidelights and a screen made of acrylic rods (clear and orange) with fluorescent lights in the top of the screen box. The acrylic rods provide a level of privacy for the people in the office, but they enhance the sense of seeing-through (transparency).

The selection and arrangement of lighting was very careful as well. In the lobby there are classic pendants to establish style and recessed square lights to reinforce the geometric order of the space. The open-ceiling lunch room features bright, exciting pendants which have both a classic look and a departure from the crispness of the office space. The fluorescent lights in the open office have a random pattern in discreet, articulated ceiling pods, reflecting the complex spatial relationships that happen in an open office environment.