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December 8, 2014
WASHINGTON, DC, December 8, 2014 — Covington & Burling officially opened its new Washington office today at CityCenter, anchoring the landmark, mixed-use development in the heart of downtown Washington.
With more than 1,100 lawyers and staff in Washington, the firm now occupies 420,000 square feet in two connected office towers on the 10-acre development. Built by Foster + Partners and designed by LSM, the interior space reflects a cutting-edge and functional architectural approach. The building is certified by the U.S. Building Council as LEED Gold.
“We have moved to a vibrant neighborhood and an office space that is designed to promote teamwork, collaboration and community among our office in Washington and around the globe,” said Timothy Hester, chair of the firm’s management committee. “The new design is more open and bright, advances our use of technology and allows us to connect better with one another.”
”Our new space was designed with an eye on workplace quality, enhanced efficiencies, and providing first-rate support for our clients,” said
John Waters, executive director of the firm. “We are able to fit more people into a building that is virtually the same size as our old space by using innovative design and technology to create visual openness and offices that are ergonomically correct. And we have plenty of room to grow.”
As the firm looks forward, it also highlights its history in the new building with a special pro bono wall, as well as conference rooms and a full-scale mock courtroom honoring four of its late partners: Dean G. Acheson, one of the firm’s first associates and former Secretary of State; Edward B. Burling, a co-founder and mainstay of the firm for its first 48 years; Charles F.C. Ruff, who launched the firm’s white-collar practice and later served as White House Counsel; and Howard C. Westwood, a prominent litigator also well known for his role in the development and funding of legal services programs.
Covington’s last office move in Washington occurred in 1981, when the firm became the anchor tenant of 1201 Pennsylvania Avenue, the first private office building project completed under the Pennsylvania Avenue Redevelopment Authority. “The firm was widely viewed as a pioneer in placemaking in the early stages of the revitalization of Pennsylvania Avenue between the White House and the Capitol,” observed Debra Lehman Smith, a partner at LSM.
“Covington is doing this once again with its move to the transformative development at CityCenter,” Ms. Smith said. “The new office space celebrates the features of Foster's buildings, with active interconnections between the office towers, visual permeability from inside to out and ground-level artwork that engages the community. As Covington approaches its 100th anniversary, it again adds a terrific new chapter to its story of Washington leadership.”