Drees & Sommer Oversees Development of Merck’s Corporate Headquarters

BU: Durch seine großflächige Glasfassade vermittelt der Neubau Offenheit und Transparenz auch nach außen.

Merck, a leading science and technology company, began a strategic initiative in 2012 to develop its head office in the German city of Darmstadt into a global, outward-looking the corporate headquarters. The ONE Global Headquarters program, which covers a number of closely connected areas such as architecture, innovation, communication and culture, will be completed by the end of this year - in time for Merck's celebration of its 350th anniversary in 2018. The architectural aspect of the program includes around 70 sub-projects. The main focus will be on the construction of the Merck Innovation Center and a new staff restaurant, as well as the redesigning of the public space connected to the company's private grounds. Drees & Sommer is providing extensive project management and consulting services to Merck in relation to the initiative's architectural projects.

Over its 350-year history, Merck has managed to adapt repeatedly in line with the changing markets. The Group now presents itself as an innovative global science and technology company and is developing its corporate headquarters in Darmstadt. The architectural changes planned by the company encompass several different individual projects, from renovation and new construction to infrastructure and roadbuilding.

The centerpiece of the ONE Global Headquarters project will be the new Innovation Center. This modern building responds to the needs of the changing workplace, and its open structure provides room for innovation and creativity. In addition to a staff restaurant and office space, the new building will have a multimedia library, an auditorium, a café, and lounge areas covering a total area of around 22,000 square meters. The building complex was designed by the international architectural firm Henn, based in Munich.

Along with the Merck Innovation Center, there will be a new square, which will be open to the public and will include other buildings. This led Merck to the idea of using the buildings and the external areas to showcase the future. Innovative materials from the Group's Performance Materials division will be used here, including Merck's Liquid Crystal Windows. Using licrivisionTM technology, these windows offer a new shading solution and can be used as a major component of sustainable air conditioning systems for buildings.

Three solar trees originating from the German Pavilion at Expo 2015 in Milan will also be visible from the public space in another new square. Approximately 12 meters high, they have flexible organic photovoltaic (OPV) modules. Merck manufactures the central, active component of the solar trees using its innovative lisicon® brand materials.

Drees & Sommer has been overseeing this ambitious project since 2014 with experts from different fields. Drees & Sommer's project managers therefore play an essential part in ensuring that the project as a whole is completed within budget, on schedule, and to the desired standard of quality. This multi-project management is complemented by technical and economic construction consulting and real estate and facility management consulting services. In addition, Drees & Sommer's Lean Construction Management (LCM®) experts ensure transparent project execution, efficient construction processes and thus completion on schedule.