The pandemic-driven downturn in office market activity has created an opportunity for law firms to reassess their physical footprint and make adjustments in highly competitive and expensive markets such as Los Angeles and San Francisco.
While, on a national scale, law firms continue to downsize, recent activity demonstrates that some firms have seized the moment to relocate or expand to new markets.
“Some firms have taken advantage of the current tenant-favored market to renew or relocate in a smaller footprint with more favorable lease terms and concessions,” said Ron Burkhardt, a managing director at Newmark who sits in the firm’s Los Angeles office.
For Chicago-born firm Jenner & Block, that resulted in a new office in Los Angeles to better suit its growth in the region. The firm, previously located at the US Bank Towers, announced it leased a new 23,000-square-foot office at City National Plaza in Los Angeles this month.
While Jenner didn’t downsize, it moved to same-sized offices for associates and partners. The new space also features a “bright and airy” design and art collection, in addition to a conference center that functions as the ”client-facing heart” of the office and includes two conference rooms, one of which opens into the lounge for larger gatherings.
The move “allows us to continue upholding the firm’s deeply held values of fostering a collaborative environment, developing the next generation of lawyers through mentorship, giving back to our communities through pro bono and public service, and ensuring our workplace is diverse and inclusive,” Brandon Fox, managing partner of the Los Angeles office, said in a statement.