Located in the recently built 1000 Connecticut Building in downtown Washington, D.C., Arent Fox's 235,000-sq-ft leased space is spread across levels two through eight, as well as portions of the first level. The interior fit-out project created offices, workspaces, conference rooms, a 150-seat auditorium and galleys.

The team installed numerous high-end features, such as ornamental metal staircases, a water feature, curved drywall and penny-tile, egg-shaped pantries.

A change order to add a curved-glass smoke baffle to the office's five-story staircase presented the greatest challenge during construction. Receiving the notice to proceed just three months before scheduled substantial completion, the long lead time for custom fabrication of the curved components caused significant delays, not only to the staircase construction but to surrounding elements, too.

The high-end millwork and flooring surrounding the staircase—as well as finishes in the offices adjacent to the staircase—could not be installed until issues caused by the draft-stop change were resolved. Through significant planning and coordination by the design and construction teams, substantial completion was achieved on time and without sacrificing quality.

Due to the unusual geometry of the floor plate, caused by the adjacent diagonal of Connecticut Avenue, designers created curved and canted elements to ease the harshness of the base building's angular shape. The design team gave the contractor floor plans that showed the partitions' floor, midpoint and ceiling contours.

To construct the partitions, a grid system was created on the deck, with the placement of the bottom, midpoint and top studs marked out by the design team. Using lasers to ensure consistency with the layout, flowing drywall surfaces were created that were consistent with the designers' vision.

Despite the complex design features and a tight, nine-month construction schedule, the project was delivered on time. The project team saw no lost-time accidents and a zero OSHA recordable incident rate during the 100,000 work-hours logged on the job.


Arent Fox Tenant Fit-Out, Washington, D.C.

Key Players

Owner Arent Fox LLP

Design Firm STUDIOS architecture

General Contractor Clark Construction Group

Structural Engineer Smislova, Kehnemui & Assoc. P.A.

MEP Engineer WFT Engineering Inc.

Electrical Subcontractor PerLectric Inc.

Mechanical and Plumbing Pro Air

Demountable Partition Unifor

Millwork Brochsteins Inc.

Drywall and ACT Manganaro MidAtlantic

Misc. and Ornamental Metals AIW Inc.

Tile and Stone R. Bratti

Water Feature BluWorld

Fiberglass C.W. Keller & Associates

Flooring NCF Floors