The firm built out the top two floors
of the building and received naming
rights to it as well.

IRVINE, CA-Law firm K&L Gates LLP has moved into a new space at 1 Park Plaza, 1100 and 1200, here. The location is a new build out of the top two floors of the 12-story building owned by the Irvine Co., including marquee signage.

David J. Perry of K&L Gates tells that the move from 1900 Main St. here was due to current and future expansion. “We had one floor there, and it held about 33 lawyers, and we had just filled it up. We will continue to grow this office, and we need new space. ”

He adds that the design of the building and the fact that K&L received naming rights to it were “significant in our decision.” In addition to the top two floors of the building, K&L also took roughly 2,000 square feet of lobby space for a conference center. 

CBRE SVP Dean Chandler represented K&L Gates in the build out and move from the firm’s previous location. Chandler tells GlobeSt.clom that the move gave K&L “a chance to significantly expand their business in Orange County—both their presence and their square footage—and provided them a high-identity location with a quality environment and numerous amenities. They really made a statement in Orange County with their location and top signage.”

Architect Debra Lehman-Smith and artist Jim Isserman worked together to design the space, creating a unique layout for a law firm. Perry tells that Lehman-Smith views the space as one would an art gallery, except that instead of showcasing the art, she showcases the people who work in the firm. “It’s open, there are tall ceilings in the reception area, and a lot of glass where you would usually see walls and doors. There’s also a lot of light that comes in. The idea is to create a space that’s efficient, but at the same time shows off the people. The space doesn’t become the story—the people and the art do.”

The Orange County office market continues to improve, although slowly. According to Cushman & Wakefield’s third-quarter office report for Southern California, the direct vacancy rate for Orange County office space declined 2.4% to 16.3% year-over-year, and the overall vacancy rate declined 2.5% year-over-year. Irvine’s direct vacancy rate (not including Irvine Spectrum) declined 4.5% to 16.4%, and the overall vacancy rate for that area declined 4.7% to 16.8% year-over-year; the Irvine Spectrum region’s direct and overall vacancy rates each declined 3.4% to 10.8% and 11%, respectively.

As previously reported, senior executives from two of the largest landowners in Orange County—the Irvine Co. and Rancho Mission Viejo—and homebuilders Ryland Homes and Shea Homes are entering the boxing ring tomorrow, November 9, to raise funds for HomeAid Orange County. The first-ever “Fight For A Cause” event will take place at 6 p.m. at Urban Arena, 3195 Red Hill Ave. in Costa Mesa.