The Urethane Blog

Dow to Build New Headquarters Building

Dow Chemical to build new six-story corporate center in Midland


MIDLAND, MI — The Dow Chemical Co. has announced plans to build a brand new 150,000-square-foot building to serve as the centerpiece of its corporate headquarters in Midland.

Dow Chairman and CEO Andrew Liveris announced to employees Friday, July 17, that construction of the new six-story building will begin this year and take two years to complete. Dow began operations in Midland in 1897 and has grown to a worldwide chemical-manufacturing giant.

The decision to build a new corporate building "reaffirms Dow's commitment to Midland and the Great Lakes Bay region," according to a statement sent out by the company Friday.


The cost of the new facility was not announced.

The new corporate building will replace the current 2020 Willard H. Dow Center in Midland, and will be part of the company's 150-acre corporate headquarters campus located off East Patrick Road.

The new facility is being developed by Troy-based KIRCO, a company with more than 40 years of experience in energy-efficient construction and corporate project management. Kirksey Architecture of Houston, Texas, will act as architect for the facility.

Midland City Manager Jon Lynch called the announcement a "very tangible example" of the commitment he knows Dow has made to the community.

"It certainly is a strong message of their commitment to Midland," Lynch said.

Dow's global headquarters includes buildings that house several of Dow's corporate, business and functional offices. The campus also includes a video production studio, employee training center and wellness/fitness center.

Lynch said he has heard Liveris talk about how the community is central to the company's culture. The company, in turn, is very important to the city and surrounding region, the city manager said.

"They're obviously a core economic driver," Lynch said. "There's no denying the fact that they have a major impact."

As well as providing thousands of jobs in the area, he said the company's size also means thousands of Dow employees with various passions and interests feed the spirit of volunteerism and community in Midland and across the region.

As well as being home to the company's corporate headquarters, Midland is also the location for Michigan Operations, the original production site founded by H.H. Dow.

The Dow Chemical Co. employs 5,974 people at its six sites in Michigan and more than 24,000 at 48 sites spread across the United States.

Products researched, developed or manufactured by Dow at its Michigan sites include bonding adhesives for the automotive market, products for the pharmaceutical industry, electronic materials that help companies produce smaller and faster devices, herbicides and insecticides and solar power technology.

The new headquarters building, according to the press release, is "part of a larger, ongoing initiative to support collaboration, company growth, and innovation-driven business practices."

"It will also create multiple advantages, offering greater efficiencies in energy, land and water use, and will improve operational costs over the long-term," the release states.

The new building will include a visitor reception area, customer conference rooms and a cafeteria with an outdoor patio space overlooking a pond feature and natural area surrounding the building.

The facility is designed with an "open plan" and has space for about 600 employees and contractors. The design calls for use of both Dow-manufactured materials and recycled resources from the soon-to-be-demolished 2020 Willard H. Dow Center site.

"The open-plan design of the building and technology upgrades reflect Dow's focus on engagement and streamlined communication to propel the company's culture forward," the corporate fact sheet for the building states. "The building's sustainable and adaptable design is further expected to advance employee productivity that will benefit customers and the markets Dow serves."

The following are a few of the technology features and sustainable development elements included in the design:

  • The latest in audio visual and Internet technologies to enhance productivity and innovation
  • Flexible office space, meeting rooms, media centers, huddle rooms and break rooms to foster greater collaboration and efficiency
  • Open work environments designed to embrace collaboration and enhance the well-being of employees in the workplace
  • Industry-leading office design standards will be implemented to ensure the most efficient, productive, and cost-effective use of space
  • Green (vegetative) roofs will provide energy savings, mitigate heat island effects, and dramatically reduce stormwater runoff
  • 20,000 tons of material from the demolition of WHDC 2020 will be designated for recycling
  • More than 10,000 tons of concrete from the WHDC 2020 building will be recycled and used for various substructure elements and temporary roads
  • 20 percent of building products will be from recycled materials 

Dow hopes to pursue LEED certification once the new building is complete.

LEED, or Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design, is a green building certification program through the U.S. Green Building Council that "recognizes best-in-class building strategies and practices," according to the council's website.