Since officially breaking ground in mid 2014, progress on Zurich Insurance Group's enormous new North American headquarters in suburban Schaumburg has moved forward with the steady determination of a fine Swiss watch. The design, comprised of three very large offset Jenga-esque bars supported by internal cross-bracing, is a joint venture between Chicago-based architecture firms Goettsch Partners and CannonDesign. The henge-like structure tops out at 11 stories and will deliver a whopping 750,000 square feet of space for approximately 2,500 Zurich employees and contractors. While the site's giant multi-level concrete garage built to accommodate thousands of employee vehicles is an undeniably suburban feature, automobile-centric design is pretty much par for the course when it comes to corporate headquarters built outside the city's central business district. Zurich's new HQ is the Chicago area's largest single-tenant office project since Tellabs Inc. moved to its new 800,000 square-foot Naperville campus in 2001.
Project development and construction is being handled by Clayco while the 40-acre site is owned by Stonemont Financial Group, who plan to lease the office space to Zurich. According to Crain's, the plan will also receive tax increment financing (TIF) cash from the Village of Schaumburg conditional on the number of employees at the site staying above 1,000. A long-time economic anchor of Schaumburg, Zurich North America previously occupied a pair of 21-story towers located near Woodfield shopping mall. The Swiss insurer's new headquarters is scheduled for occupancy in Fall of this year. Interested observers can keep tabs on the construction by driving down I-90 or via this slightly more convenient webcam.