With future growth and millennial attorneys in mind, a local law firm is moving out of its downtown coworking digs and headed for Scott’s Addition.
Byrne Legal Group, founded last October by namesake Sean Byrne and several others who left Hancock Daniel in Henrico, has signed on for a new office at the Clay Suites development under construction at 3117 W. Clay St.
The firm will take 4,200 square feet on the two-story building’s first floor, moving out of the Gather coworking space at 313 E. Broad St.
BLG launched with a roster of five and has since grown to a headcount of eight, in part by luring over another two attorneys from Hancock Daniel, where Byrne worked for 20 years. They focus mainly on representing health care providers in medical malpractice cases, and other civil and criminal litigation.
Sean Byrne said his young firm looked at buying its own building downtown, as well as at space around Innsbrook and Short Pump, before zeroing in on Clay Suites.
“This place jumped out to us as we were considering next steps,” said Byrne, a University of Richmond grad. “Being able to design the space lets us think about how millennial attorneys want to work. They don’t want 1,000 square feet per lawyer anymore.”
He said the pandemic and the ongoing trend of working from home also is influencing the firm’s designs for the new office. Fultz & Singh Architects is handling the design.
BLG was represented in its lease by Thalhimer’s Brian Berkey. Leasing at Clay Suites is handled by Thalhimer’s Amy Broderick.
The building’s redevelopment is underway by a group led by Yogi Singh. It ultimately will house 14,500 square feet, thanks to a 4,500-square-foot addition the developers worked into the design. BLG is the second tenant the group has landed, along with primary care chain VillageMD, which has leased half of the second floor. The asking price for space is $25-$30 per square foot for a triple-net lease.
Construction is expected to be finished early next year and BLG expects a springtime move-in. Emerge Construction Group is the general contractor.
Byrne said the firm is meanwhile dealing with the upheaval the coronavirus has caused in the court system. The firm, which handles many civil trials, has seen those cases put on hold as states and localities figure out how to restart such proceedings safely.
“It will be well into 2021 until we’re having trials of civil cases,” Byrne said.
He said the firm is also staying on its toes to be ready for COVID’s effects on the medical liability field.
“COVID is changing the world of medicine and law in all kinds of different ways,” he said. “We’re just trying to stay ahead of it.”