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updated: 6/25/2014 8:23 AM

Schaumburg sees Zurich office becoming 'icon for the area'

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  • Video: Zurich breaks ground

  • Clayco CEO and Chairman Bob Clark presents Mike Foley, right, CEO of Zurich North America Commercial, with the official groundbreaking shovel as the insurance company begins construction on their new Schaumburg headquarters.

       Clayco CEO and Chairman Bob Clark presents Mike Foley, right, CEO of Zurich North America Commercial, with the official groundbreaking shovel as the insurance company begins construction on their new Schaumburg headquarters.
    Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

  • Jen Kyung, Zurich North America business lead, throws a shovel of sand at the ceremony with other dignitaries Tuesday.

       Jen Kyung, Zurich North America business lead, throws a shovel of sand at the ceremony with other dignitaries Tuesday.
    Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

  • Construction crews will begin work on a 735,000-square-foot building on a 40-acre property on the Motorola Solutions campus.

       Construction crews will begin work on a 735,000-square-foot building on a 40-acre property on the Motorola Solutions campus.
    Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

  • The headquarters will "stand as a very public confirmation of our strong position in the U.S.," Zurich North America Commercial CEO Mike Foley said.

       The headquarters will "stand as a very public confirmation of our strong position in the U.S.," Zurich North America Commercial CEO Mike Foley said.
    Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

  • Employees will move from the Zurich Towers in Schaumburg to their new Meacham Road headquarters, shown in an artist rendering.

       Employees will move from the Zurich Towers in Schaumburg to their new Meacham Road headquarters, shown in an artist rendering.
    Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

 
 

Zurich North America kicked off construction Tuesday on what Schaumburg officials say will become an iconic building on the Motorola Solutions campus.

The insurance company will receive state and village incentives for the move from its Schaumburg office towers to a 40-acre site along Meacham Road near I-90, across from the Renaissance Schaumburg Hotel and Convention Center.

Zurich broke ground Tuesday morning on construction of a 735,000-square-foot building, currently ranking as the largest, custom-built office space in the country, officials say.

"It will serve as an icon for the area," Schaumburg Mayor Al Larson said. "It will raise the bar in terms of architectural quality and of course offer a wonderful complement to our convention center across the street."

The project will bring 700 construction jobs and keep about 2,500 Zurich employees in Schaumburg after other suburbs and states courted a company move.

It's also one of the first additions in Schaumburg's new tax increment financing district.

In a TIF district, property tax payments to all local governments are frozen at their current levels for up to 23 years. The village then funnels any additional property tax revenues into a special fund that can be used to help pay for improvements to the area.

Zurich is eligible to collect 65 percent of the property taxes the project generates -- as much as $100 million for the first phase and $10 million for a potential expansion.

In addition, Zurich is expected to ink a deal with the state to collect $20.3 million in tax credits over 10 years and a $50,000 grant for job training for new hires.

Slated to open in 2016, the headquarters will feature eco-friendly amenities, including green roofs, native plantings and charging stations for electric cars.

"Our new headquarters for North America will embody that commitment and stand as a very public confirmation of our strong position in the U.S.," Zurich North America Commercial CEO Mike Foley told a gathering of state and local officials.

The developer and design builder, Clayco, and investor-landlord, Stonemont Financial Group, are making a roughly $300 million investment, officials say. Stonemont plans to lease the building to Zurich for the next 26 years.

"I look forward to seeing this building grace our skyline for many, many, many years," Larson said.

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