Wingate Hughes Architects Designs D.C.’s First Infinity Office Space 3-Ton Glass “Garage” Wall Combines Amenity Space and Roof into One Continuous Room
Wingate Hughes Architects was commissioned by LaSalle Investment Management to re-design the third floor at 1620 L Street, NW to make the space a differentiator for the entire Washington, D.C. building. Tasked with game changing, Wingate Hughes took advantage of the underutilized square footage by retrofitting the third story with four office suites, increasing renting potential, and converted the perimeter rock-filled roof into a deck with shareable amenities. Not stopping there, the firm replaced the wall bordering the roof with a 3-ton glass “garage” and transformed the common room and roof into one continuous area. “We are no stranger to defying convention and helping clients rethink their space,” said Gavin Hughes Daniels, co-founding principal of Wingate Hughes. “The third floor’s new infinity office space is an oasis for 1620 L’s tenants in an otherwise hectic city, and the once 80 percent vacant building is now 90 percent occupied.”
Wingate Hughes’ design team let go of all traditional window and door ideas when deciding how to open the patio to the common space. The impressive, 23-foot custom-glass “garage” wall operates effortlessly with a flip of a switch and a hydraulic lift, allowing the patio and the common space to become one. “Wingate Hughes did something for 1620 L that no one had thought of and created an infinity office space reminiscent of a pool that trails off to the horizon,” said Daniels “Except, this isn’t vacation. It’s an urban retreat for today’s workforce to use daily, enabling productivity, offering balance, and enhancing work culture.” The whole building is invited to use the third floor’s common and roof space for work, play, and meetings.
To make the roof deck a reality, Wingate Hughes created a raised platform level with the third floor and placed tile rimmed by grass turf on the new surface. LED lights frame the patio and illuminate the large L-shaped couch at night, a durable family-style picnic table is perfect for meetings and meals, and a fire pit is available for all to use. In addition to the roof upgrades, the indoor common space has a shared pantry to encourage meeting new people, lightweight furniture to easily reconfigure for gatherings of varied sizes, walls with writable surfaces, a television that moves on a motorized track to make space for wall notes, shared conference rooms, and phone rooms. Most importantly, though, 1620 L is home to the only infinity office space in D.C. – a true real estate diamond in the rough.
"Wingate took our concept of providing a never before seen amenity and brought it to life,” said JLL Managing Director Doug Mueller. "We think this is the tip of the spear as the response from the tenant community was overwhelmingly positive.” JLL’s Doug Mueller, Evan Behr and Nathan Beach are leasing the property on behalf of LaSalle Investment Management.