International furniture manufacturer Norix has taken occupancy on a newly constructed, 205,563-square-foot corporate headquarters and manufacturing facility at One Innovation Drive in West Chicago, IL. Construction was completed in June 2021.
Heitman Architects designed the facility to LEED Gold specifications with two goals in mind: to fully integrate the company’s operations into one location and support Norix’s dedicated commitment to sustainability, including the extensive use of renewable energy.
Norix is an internationally recognized manufacturer of furniture for the healthcare, GSA military, shelter, education and commercial segments. The company is a strong proponent of sustainability in the design and manufacture of its products, including the use of renewable energy. Equally as important, Norix’s products are recognized for their ability to humanize environments that historically are institutional in nature. This results in furniture offerings that are residential in appearance but engineered to withstand rigorous use.
Heitman Architects designed the corporate manufacturing and warehouse facility to support the company’s goal of creating a sustainable and efficient environment where all manufacturing, assembly, packaging, storage, distribution, showroom and corporate office processes are housed under one roof. The new facility will allow Norix to add a significant number of new jobs and to continue its success through aggressive growth and market expansion. The facility was designed to support approximately 300 employees.
“Norix has made a long-standing commitment to environmental sustainability and this state-of-the art headquarters reflects its core mission as well as the products the firm produces,” said Erik Heitman, AIA, LEED-AP, project manager of Heitman Architects, a national firm based in suburban Chicago. “The Norix corporate headquarters was designed to combine the best in sustainability with an innovative interior and exterior design features that seamlessly incorporate all company functions in one setting.”
Scott Karl, Norix President and son of the company’s founders, adds that the company’s sustainability journey is just beginning. “We’re already having discussions about what can we accomplish over the next 10 years. We want to innovate our way out of the limitations of current technology and set some bold goals — and our new facility at One Innovation Drive really opens up the world for us.”
Company leadership was also focused on building a facility that would embody the firm’s culture, work environment, and serve as a foundation for attracting and retaining talent. “We want to be a leader in the industry and this building will be part of our legacy, a symbol of what we’re trying to accomplish,” said Karl.
Highlights of the sustainable features at the core of the building design include:
· The use of natural topography and landscaping; an extensive pedestrian pathway around the property; energy efficiency elements in the building envelope; renewable energy sources; and an extensive sun shade and solar panel system to harvest daylight.
· The use of exterior sun shades to block direct sunlight entering the office.
The facility is on 22 acres within the 800-acre DuPage Business Center, a premier business park campus developed by the DuPage Airport Authority. The building is in a campus setting that offers room for expansion and is adjacent to a 15-acre nature area.