Case Study Coretrust Capital Partners

Coretrust Capital Partners is a real estate investment firm focused primarily on the acquisition and operation of office properties.

Its team of commercial real estate professionals provide institutional investors access to direct real estate investments, targeting enhanced returns generated through value-focused acquisitions, re-positioning, and asset management. When Coretrust acquired the 48-story high-rise at 444 Flower Street in Downtown Los Angeles (DTLA), leaders of the firm took the opportunity to rebrand the colloquially-known “LA Law” building (for its appearance in the 1980s television series) and show how a variety of modern companies and industries could use the space. They wanted to think outside the box—from their clients’ perspectives. Could a whole floor showcase different work environments? Through some collaborative partnerships, Coretrust created not just one, but two Workplace Innovation Labs—in LA and Philadelphia—to offer clients a place to experience what the future of work could look, feel, sound, and even smell like, in ways they’ve never experienced before.


Los Angeles, California

Project Specs

Real Estate Investments
LA – 22,500 Sq. Ft.
Philadelphia – 12,500 Sq. Ft.

Design Firm


Dealer Partner

AOE and Peoplespace

Coretrust approached design firm Gensler, Haworth, and our dealer partner Peoplespace (formerly IOS) with this idea and a challenge: How to take a whole floor of this DTLA tower and show potential customers what the space can do for them—as efficiently as possible. They also wanted to show how workplace trends—such as talent attraction and retention, space optimization, and collaborative workstyles—are manifested in space design. These work environments would ideally demonstrate ideas that would resonate with customers, both now and into the future.

“We felt that to get the attention of the brokerage community and respective markets we needed to bring them in and show a Workspace Innovation Lab. We also wanted to demonstrate that we can be good partners for their tenant clients, with a pulse on where work is going.”

Thomas Ricci

Managing Principal, Development & Construction

The partnership among the four entities led to brainstorming sessions and research, accomplished using the virtual workspace of our Bluescape™ technology. This collaborative process guided the ideal layout, right mix of work environments, and appropriate elements to wow the broker community and resonate with potential tenants. Out of this work came the concept for the first Workplace Innovation Lab, located in LA.

During the development of the LA space, a second team was formed in Philadelphia, consisting of Coretrust, Gensler, Haworth, and our dealer partner Advanced Office Environments (AOE). Again, the Bluescape tool provided the collaborative workspace throughout the entire process. Using the core ideas that emerged from the initial discovery sessions, each team developed a customized space for their corresponding location and market.

A True Living Lab

In LA, a new idea emerged through the exploration process: how to bring in elements that support well-being for people in the workplace. The experimental approach began with soundscaping and lighting, and ways to connect with nature. Even aromatherapy was infused, bringing the Workplace Innovation Lab to a new level of experience for clients.

To top it off, Coretrust got really innovative by bringing the outside in: They actually cut away a corner of the exterior wall on the Lab floor in LA to create a covered terrace with fully-extending doors that can be opened so the entire space—22,500 square feet—gets fresh air.

Supporting the Continuing Evolution of the Workplace

Since completion, Coretrust opened both locations to a few companies in different industries, turning these showrooms and living labs into true work environments. With occupants at work—actually using the space—clients can see the energy that is generated, hear the testimonials of other customers with similar workspace challenges, and learn which elements people like best.

The Coretrust team is pleased with the outcome and the process that landed them two spaces, on opposite coasts. What’s more, their Workplace Innovation Labs have created quite a buzz, garnering attention beyond their target markets, from a place they didn’t expect: Many academic institutions have toured the labs and expressed interest in partnering to conduct research in the space. This enthusiasm bodes well for the future—not just for Coretrust but also for the future of work. The firm plans to build upon what they have learned and continue the Workplace Innovation Lab concept in other buildings they acquire.