Community Legal Services is a non-profit law firm whose mission is to help low-income Philadelphia residents obtain equal access to justice by providing them with advice and representation in civil legal matters. The new 20,000 SF facility will house 40 full-time attorneys, their paralegals, and support staff, and will have a large meeting room that will be shared with other community organizations.
The design of the new facility allows daylight and fresh air into all occupied areas through an efficient U-shaped plan. A central courtyard garden provides a formal organizing element, as well as a peaceful and secure space for clients to wait. To optimize energy performance, the design employs a geothermal heating and cooling system, daylighting, an extensive green roof, and a high-performance building envelope clad with terra cotta and fiber cement rainscreen panels. The building is anticipated to achieve LEED Gold Certification.