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Deals & Dealmakers

Shearman & Sterling Brings Workplace of the Future to Life

Global law firm Shearman & Sterling has completed the transformation of its New York City headquarters at 599 Lexington Avenue. The modernized space is a testament to the firm’s commitment to fostering a more connected, inclusive and engaged global culture. Completed in two short years, the project provides an enhanced client experience that reinforces the firm’s environmental, social and governance goals, and reduces its overall carbon footprint.

Shearman & Sterling elected to redesign the space before the COVID-19 pandemic, intending to create a workplace that anticipated the evolving needs of its growing and diverse talent base, and would continue to support excellence in client service. The 340,000-square-foot space features high-performance technologies, state-of-the-art workspaces, wellness amenities and COVID-19 safety features. The human-centric model illustrates the sustainability aspects of its redesign.

“The redesign of our New York office marks the continuation of what will be a global investment in our firm’s culture and values,” said Kenneth Johnsen, Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer at Shearman & Sterling. “Our people and clients are at the heart of everything we do. We value their well-being above all else, and our newly renovated global headquarters embodies the firm’s human-centric model.” 

Integral to the redesign were sustainability, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility features. The Midtown Manhattan space now includes lighting and shade systems powered by recycled Ethernet cables, occupancy sensors, double-insulated glass, and other eco-conscious features. Equally apportioned office spaces, improved boardroom acoustics, artwork created by emerging diverse artists, and wheelchair accessibility throughout the building, reaffirm the firm’s commitment to Diversity & Inclusion.

“Every detail of our 599 Lexington Avenue building was thoughtfully curated with our people, clients and global communities in mind,” said Arsha Cazazian-Clement, Director of Global Real Estate for Shearman & Sterling. “This is a pivotal time in our firm’s history, and we extend our gratitude to the hundreds of dedicated professionals who helped us bring this workplace of the future to life.”    

Shearman & Sterling is the first global law firm to participate in WELL Building Standard (WELL) at an enterprise scale, committing its 22 global offices to pursue the WELL rating. The firm’s New York City headquarters is also on track for LEED Gold certification, a globally recognized symbol of sustainability achievement and leadership. The firm partnered with construction management firm L&K Partners, global architectural firm Perkins&Will, and an MEP engineering consulting firm, JFK&M, for the renovation of its New York office.

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