Planar Display Technologies Reinforce Brand Identity at New Leidos Headquarters
Headquartered in Reston, Virginia, 20 miles west of Washington D.C., Leidos is an American defense, aviation and biomedical research company and a global leader in the integration and application of information technology, science and engineering to solve some of the most demanding challenges. In 2020, Leidos consolidated its Reston operations from two sites into a new, 17-story ground-up building, also in Reston, that serves as the company’s new global headquarters.
To reflect its core identity and innovative leadership in the new workplace, Leidos engaged architectural firm Gensler to design a space that embeds Leidos’ standout brand into the architecture. “The Leidos headquarters was an opportunity to create a beacon to showcase who they are,” said Gensler Associate and Designer Carol Schneider. “With technology at the forefront, the new headquarters is a vessel to promote their culture, and solve the hardest, most important problems to come.”
The 276,000-square-foot space was created in the style of a vertical campus with a series of two-story community hubs designed with slab openings to provide visual connection from floor to floor.
Leidos dedicated 17,000 square feet to amenity space to help them attract and retain talent. The built environment also includes unique design features—in the lobby is an art installation serving as the world’s largest kaleidoscope. According to Gensler, the art piece is a symbolic nod to the company’s moniker (“Leidos” is taken from “kaleidoscope”) and serves as a planning strategy for bringing order and beauty to a rectilinear building.
The new Leidos headquarters leans heavily on technology and includes an impressive array of visual display technologies from Planar. The display solutions installed throughout the space include:
-A nearly 32-foot-long, 9-foot-high Planar® DirectLight® X LED Video Wall System with a 1.2mm pixel pitch (DLX1.2) in a 16x8 configuration, located in a 2,900-square-foot multi-purpose room on the first floor.
-A nearly 12-foot-long, 7-foot-high Planar DirectLight X LED Video Wall System with a 0.9mm pixel pitch (DLX0.9) in a 6x6 configuration, located in the boardroom.
-A nearly 16-foot-long, 4.5-foot-high Planar® LED MultiTouch with a 1.2mm pixel pitch (DLX1.2) in an 8x4 configuration, installed in the security operations center.
-More than 100 Planar® QE Series and Planar® EP Series large format LCD displays.
According to Schneider, it was important to Leidos that state-of-the-art technology was featured in the new headquarters and used in different ways. “First and foremost, Leidos is a technology company, and they wanted that evident throughout the building,” she said.
During design planning, Gensler’s design team toured several installations in New York City to understand the different types of video wall technologies being used and to make the best selections for the new headquarters.
“The rationale behind the display integrations was to provide a functional way of delivering Leidos’ product and information through large format capacities in the multi-purpose room and boardroom, and to use technology in collaboration areas to atmospherically enhance the staff’s experience,” Schneider said. “For proper viewing, sharpness and pixel count were important. So was a bezel-free content field on the large-scale screens so content stood out the best it could.”
John McKinney, Gensler principal and design director, said the display technologies allow Leidos to focus on their “smart” brand value. “The technology creates an ambient backdrop, infusing color, shapes and inspirational quotes,” he said. “One example is the larger-than-life digital totems that fill the pre-function area. Rotating ambient shapes and quotes create slowly, constantly moving content to activate the space. The entire headquarters is a seamless, user-friendly technology experience.”