Waldkirch, March 23, 2023 – With a symbolic first shovelful of soil, construction began on a new office building at SICK. At the groundbreaking ceremony, held on the company premises in Waldkirch, representatives of SICK AG, the founding family, the city of Waldkirch, the company Ochs Schmidhuber Architekten GmbH (OSA) and Dürrschnabel Industriebau GmbH all set to work with their shovels. The new, ca. 9,300-square-meter building, will be home to more than 500 modern workspaces. Construction costs are estimated at 29 million euros. The project is slated for completion in the first quarter of 2025.
It took nearly five months to demolish the old office building, which had been at the same site. The first building SICK erected in Waldkirch, it dated back to 1977. The innovativeness and spirit that Dr. Erwin Sick lent the old building will find a new home in its successor. This will be achieved in part with a “Dr. Erwin Sick Loggia”: after undergoing a modern interpretation, his personal office with terrace from the old building will be immortalized in the new one in the form of a loggia.
During the ceremony, a time capsule prepared by Sebastian Glaser, grandson of company founder Dr. Erwin Sick and a member of the Supervisory Board, was buried. The capsule contained a photograph of Dr. Erwin Sick, the latest edition of the newspaper “Badische Zeitung Waldkirch,” and the blueprints for the old and new buildings.
“The former building was very important to the family. As the first building on campus to be constructed by SICK itself, it stood for our growth and our successful and lasting presence in Waldkirch. Now we are investing in a new building here, one that cements that presence while at the same time reflecting my grandfather’s ingenuity. He had his office in the original building – which makes me especially pleased that a modern interpretation of his office will be part of the new building, preserving the memory of his creative energy,” said Sebastian Glaser.
Dr. Mats Gökstorp, Chairman of the Executive Board at SICK AG, and Nicole Kurek, Executive Board member for People & Culture at SICK AG and responsible e.g. for the Facility Management portfolio, greeted the guests.
According to Nicole Kurek: “The new office spaces will reconcile our people, corporate culture, and the workplace. Good ideas will be given a new place to grow and flourish, becoming innovations.”
At the ceremony, in addition to Dr. Mats Gökstorp, Nicole Kurek and Sebastian Glaser, Renate Sick-Glaser and Dorothea Sick-Thies, the daughters of Dr. Erwin Sick; Roman Götzmann, Lord Mayor of Waldkirch; architect Florian Schmidhuber; general contractor Markus Keune, and Sascha Pautler, Head of Facility Management at SICK AG, all set to work with their shovels.
“It takes courage to craft the future – as was stated in the magazine accompanying SICK’s latest annual report. With this meaningful symbol on the ‘front doorstep’ of our city, you have once more made a bold and lasting dedication to Waldkirch. It is also a fitting symbol of your sustainable, long-term orientation with regard to future generations,” stated Lord Mayor Götzmann.
Transparency, innovation and down-to-earthness in the new building
The new building will be divided into two sections, A South and A North. All paths will converge in the South section: in addition to housing new office spaces, it will create a central hub on the office campus, one that is accessible from all sides and fosters direct, face-to-face exchanges. The North section, which will also offer new office spaces, will be located at the edge of campus and be prominently visible from Freiburger Straße. The two sections will above all differ in their exterior designs: whereas the central southern section, viewed from the outside, will be dominated by X-shaped steel-and-concrete supports – representing innovation, creativity, networking and collaboration – behind a glass façade, the northern section will be characterized by clean, straight lines, while also boasting a glass façade. The building as a whole, with its two sections, will emanate a sense of uncomplicated, down-to-earth calm, the goal being for it to feel inviting to employees and visitors alike. It will be transparent and open – for collaboration, expertise, courage and creativity, diversity and innovation.
SICK is one of the world’s leading producers of sensors and sensor solutions for industrial applications. The company, founded by Dr. Erwin Sick in 1946 and based in Waldkirch-im-Breisgau near Freiburg, is a technology and market leader. It has a worldwide presence with more than 50 subsidiaries and associated companies, as well as numerous sales offices. SICK achieved Group sales of about EUR 2 bn. during the 2021 fiscal year with more than 11,000 employees worldwide. More information on SICK is available at www.sick.com