Zurich North America: Designing for longevity

At a time when many suburban corporate campuses appear to be waning in popularity, Zurich Insurance Group’s new North American headquarters in Schaumburg, Illinois presents a striking opposition. Completed in September 2016, the new campus location provides a prime example of the benefits of suburban development, it’s influence on employee well-being, and how these developments still play a vital role in 21st Century construction.

Located an hour west of Chicago, Zurich’s sprawling 40-acre campus is a welcoming oasis to escape the downtown core. Designed with input from current Zurich employees, the campus aims to enhance communication and create an inspiring and engaging experience. Key features including, lush landscaping, walking paths, outdoor seating and ample employee parking were added and were all made possible due to the building’s suburban setting. The cornerstone of the campus is the office building, comprised of three horizontal “bars” stacked at varying angles, the design enhances daylighting, creates unique spaces for employee collaboration, and maximizes views of the surrounding landscape.

Collaboration between project teams was crucial when bringing this large-scale project to life. Led by the developer, Clayco, the building was designed by Chicago-based architecture firm Goettsch Partners, working in collaboration with CannonDesign, who handled interior design and workplace strategy.

Throughout the interior, Goldray’s decorative glass was used to create the open, airy atmosphere envisioned by Goettsch Partners. Spanning thousands of feet, the panes of decorative glass all feature a delicate horizontal line pattern. Goldray Glass created the patterned glass panels using our silkscreened ceramic frit process before tempering the glass for added safety and durability. The striped decorative glass is featured on the building’s glass railings, on the elevator surrounds, and along the mezzanine perimeter of the lobby. The glass design creates continuity and supports the linear motif that is seen and felt throughout, from the façade and structural supports, to the balustrades and light fixtures.

Upon its completion, the Zurich headquarters was awarded the coveted LEED Platinum certification for its superior environmental sustainability, a nod to the company’s core values. “This building is a showcase of all we are at Zurich: its excellence in design, its focus on sustainability, and its reflection of our employees,” boasts Zurich CEO Mike Foley. “Our new headquarters building embodies a new chapter for our organization and our re-commitment to the North American market as part of our broader, global business plan. We see a bright future for our customers, shareholders and employees.”

Goldray Glass is thrilled to have collaborated with Goettsch Partners, CannonDesign and the Glazing Contractor, Ventana Design-Build Systems to bring this large-scale design to life. For an in-depth look at the project design and construction process, check out this informative video. For additional design inspiration, please join us on Instagram,  FacebookLinkedIn or Twitter where we regularly post project pictures and case studies as we build our community of industry professionals.  If you’d like to work with a member of our team, please call us at 1-800-640-3709 or email us at info@goldrayglass.com and we’d be more than happy to assist you with your next design.