|The go-ahead has been given for construction of the Clariant Innovation Center (CIC) at the Höchst Industrial Park in Frankfurt. The Board of Directors has approved the Capital Appropriation Request (CAR) of nearly Euro 100 million, the construction permit from authorities will be applied for in October, and the cornerstone for the laboratory and office complex can be laid in early 2012.|
Once the partial construction permit has been issued, excavation can probably begin before the end of this year, according to Helmut Müller, the Technical Project Leader of CIC Planning. The lease with Infraserv Höchst, the owner of the 30 000-square-meter site, is also ready to be signed. Helmut Müller is also confident that Clariant will be able to apply for low-interest financing from the “Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau” (Reconstruction Loan Corporation) for the new facility’s environmentally sound and energy-efficient construction.
As far as energy efficiency is concerned, the three-part structure, designed by HPP Architects in Düsseldorf, is 15 - 20 percent better than the guidelines for work premises required in the Energy Conservation Act.
While the remaining formalities are being completed and open issues regarding fire prevention are being clarified, the future occupants of the CIC are attending a second series of workshops, in order to plan the set-up of their new offices. Experts from the respected Fraunhofer Institute for Intelligent Work Organization, presented their office and work concepts, which they prepared after an extensive survey of employees and their work procedures in a first series of workshops.
It is already apparent, even at this stage, that there will be larger team offices (four to eight-person units), rather than the more traditional two-person offices. The various possibilities are still being considered and discussed, as well as who will occupy which office space.
At the end of October, planning of the actual interior design will begin, specifically, where desks, meeting areas, shelves and cabinets are to be placed. One thing is for certain: The CIC will be a nosmoking environment. This reflects Clariant’s commitment to protecting the health and well-being of all company employees, as articulated by Executive Committee member Dr. Christian Kohlpaintner. For the CIC designers, their work is now moving from planning-stage models and mock-ups to reality.
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