OTJ Architects Named Designer for New Yelp D.C. Headquarters

“We are creating identifiable sections that capture the uniqueness of the different communities that help define D.C.,” points out OTJ Managing Partner Lance Jaccard, AIA, IIDA, LEED AP. “It is an exciting project for an extraordinary organization with a distinct point of view.”

OTJ Architects has been chosen to design the Washington, D.C. offices of Yelp, which plans to bring an estimated 500 jobs to the area over the next five years. Located in the Central Business District at 575 7th Street, near the National Mall and across from The Verizon Center, the approximately 53,000-square-foot space spans two buildings. Each section of the office space is being designed to reflect the physical attributes of various neighborhoods in the city.

The two buildings have an 18-inch height difference connected by a ramp and a couple of steps. The path between the two buildings will pay homage to the National Mall and include abstract cherry blossom graphics and a floor shaded in subtle green hues; and will lead to a “brainstorming” space created for open collaboration.

The reception area will feature a custom map of D.C., using Yelp’s brand colors to highlight specific paths throughout the city.

Another section of the space will echo the diverse cultures of U Street, and include a sunken lounge that channels the cool vibe of the 9:30 Club. The “Capitol Conference Room” will be highlighted by art and wall treatments that offer a dignified nod to the seat of government. The design for the 2,000-square-foot café picks up the vitality of the Georgetown waterfront, complete with a barista bar, and will feature a custom-stenciled checker board, along with other games.

“Yelp was created to give a voice to consumers through word-of-mouth reviews of local businesses,” says OTJ Studio Director Elizabeth Long, AIA, LEED AP. “Our team is working closely with Yelp to ensure the design celebrates the values of the organization, with respect to the culture of Washington, D.C.”

The distinctive lighting concept is derived from the custom D.C. map and will be highlighted by strong illumination in the north-south thoroughfares, accented with diagonal avenues and circles. In addition, the circles of light will pinpoint designated…

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