Edison International Offices – Washington DC

In establishing a new government affairs office in Washington DC, Edison International required an interior design that could purposefully convey the interaction between the company's past, present, and future.

  • Client Edison International,
  • size 5,369 sqft
  • Year 2021
  • Location Washington DC, United States,
  • Industry Utilities,
  • Gensler conveyed the 100 year old history of Edison International in the design of their offices in Washington DC.

    As an energy company that is over 100 years old, Edison International must balance a storied legacy with an unequivocally future-oriented mission. What the company is doing today is brand new, the most cutting-edge of missions, but it doesn’t want to forget the journey that led here. To convey this balance within a limited budget, Edison International partnered with Gensler.

    The project is located at 1201 New York Avenue, a building Gensler recently repositioned. The 5,000-square-foot office is purposely set in Washington, D.C. for the company’s work on Capitol Hill. For this reason, the space was designed to create a strong brand experience for Edison’s guests, and to bring the California lifestyle to Washington.

    Evident at first blush is that this does not feel like a typical Washington, D.C. office. Calm and easygoing, the space exudes sunny California. The design team built upon brand guidelines Edison International provided, transforming them into a point of pride expressed through the space’s architecture. With clean energy at the forefront, the key to the design is a windmill concept, with a centralized focal point around which movement takes place. The team expressed this concept through a unique ceiling design, achieving a palpable effect by stacking layers differentiated by angular streaks of light. Although the building architecture prescribes relatively low ceilings, the windmill concept makes the most of what is available, imbuing sensations of motion and depth.

    Visible upon reception, a green wall with carefully selected plant species puts Edison International’s sustainable mission front and center. In accordance with the company’s leadership in the energy sector, brightness permeates the space; the reception and communal cafe areas are correspondingly placed near floor-to-ceiling glass windows for exposure to natural light. Clear glass walls provide visual connections to and from the central conference room, in which the windmill effect subtly continues and frames the conversations it hosts.

    A color gradient consisting of the company’s brand tones pulls the individual through the space. The team created a large black and white graphic film that stretches across the office fronts, forming a timeline telling Edison International’s long and impactful story. Consistent with this aesthetic, black and white photography showcases distinctly Californian landscapes and some of the company’s proudest achievements. With exhibits dating back to 1890, this rich historic tour inculcates a sense of gravity alongside the energetic and modern colors and angles. For flooring, the design employs large aggregate terrazzo and a terracotta tile replete with movement and natural textures, along with soft accent rugs inspired by Californian natural features. A California gum veneer adorns the walls, adding warmth.

    Design: Gensler
    Photography: Halkin | Mason Photography