Udi odiae. sam
tsi odi audit ut
Letting There Be Light
Oftentimes, an old or historic building is closed off to its surroundings and
lacking the wide-open interior spaces desired for such contemporary uses
as commercial office space. For example, headquarters to the U.S.
Department of Commerce, the Herbert Hoover Building in Washington, D.C.,
was once the largest office building in the world with more than 1.8 million
square feet of space. The circa-1932 structure was renovated by CallisonRTKL,
largely by opening up connections between inside and out and from one
section to another.
“Prior to renovation, you could be anywhere in any corridor and see no
daylight,” recalls Wendy Phillips, an associate vice president at CallisonRTKL.
“You had a hard time knowing where you were. What we did was open up
along the west side at the end of every cross corridor an entire bay,
which faces the national mall. It really did provide better wayfinding. It brought
in so much light, you didn’t feel like you were in this endless corridor.”
“We always want it to be clear
what is old and what is new, but the
real goal is matter of continuity.”
—BERNARD SERGE GAGNÉ, ABCP
Opening up connections
between inside and out
during its renovation
resulted in more
daylighting and better
wayfinding in the
Herbert Hoover Building.