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  MEEMIC Insurance Company Headquarters, Page 38MEEMIC Insurance Company Headquarters

Neumann/Smith Architecture
400 Galleria Officentre, #555, Southfield, MI 48034

LOCATION: Auburn Hills, Michigan
Date Bid: Feb 2005
Construction Period: Apr 2005 to June 2006
Total Square Feet: 119,667 Site: 11.5 acres.
Number of Buildings: One.
Building Size: Garage, 22,528; below/grade, 17,073; first floor (elevated), 39,548; second floor, 40,518; total, 119,667 square feet. 
Building Height: Garage, -14’; below/grade, -14’; first floor, elevated, 0’; second floor, 14’; floor to floor, 14’; total, 31’4”. 
Basic Construction Type: New/structural steel. Foundation: Cast-in-place, reinforced concrete, slab-on-grade. Exterior Walls: Brick, curtainwall. Roof: Membrane. Floors: Concrete. Interior Walls: CMU, metal stud drywall.

STRUCTURAL ENGINEER: Desai/Nasr Consulting Engineers - 6765 Daly Road, West Bloomfield, MI 48322
GENERAL CONTRACTOR & COST ESTIMATOR: KIRCO - 101 West Big Beaver Road, #200, Troy, MI 48084
ELECTRICAL ENGINEER: Motor City Electric Co. - 9440 Grinnell Street, Detroit, MI 48213
MECHANICAL ENGINEER: Bumler Mechanical, Inc. - 6260 18 ˝ Mile Road, Sterling Heights, MI 48314
CIVIL ENGINEER: Nowak & Fraus PLLC - 1310 N. Stephenson Highway, Royal Oak, MI 48067

The new MEEMIC headquarters includes 104,000 square feet of “Class A” office space on two levels and an underground executive parking garage. The design of the building is modern, yet timeless. The facade consists of brick, cast stone, insulated metal panels and glass, creating a diverse composition of architectural elements that complement each other and are aesthetically pleasing. The extensive use of masonry materials on the exterior conveys stability, provides a warm and inviting image for employees and visitors, and complements the residential properties to the north and the hotels to the south. Its durability provides low maintenance for the owner. 

The exterior facade integrates cast stone veneer and precast concrete lintels with the brick veneer, providing a modern variation on traditional commercial and residential architectural detailing. This modern interpretation of more traditional detailing allows policy holders to relate to the architecture, making it more inviting and comfortable for them to visit with policy or payment questions. 

The main visitor entrance to the east and the employee entrance to the west are marked by large iconic cast stone column enclosures. These cast stone column enclosures have a dramatic modern flare capital that identifies the entrances and emphasizes the stability of the company. These over-scaled columns bear the weight of the masonry mass to create the dramatic entry portal. The weight and warmth of masonry has been utilized to provide a sense of permanence and stability, an appropriate image for an insurance company. The employees enter the building via a pedestrian bridge, which is framed by the cast stone column enclosures, creating an entry gateway into the building.

The building was sited with the property sloping down to the west towards a wetlands and Galloway Lake. The building is located next to a busy road and positioned on top of the hill, providing maximum exposure for the client and creating dramatic views to the lake. To minimize on-site parking and limit site disturbance, 64 parking spaces were placed in an underground parking garage and 77 parking spaces were land-banked with the City of Auburn Hills through the site plan approval process. In addition, employee parking is located behind the building and recessed below the residential property thus minimizing the visual effects of site lighting and automobile headlights on the residential properties.

The first floor of the building contains offices, conference rooms and a flexible training room for 300 people. Guests are welcomed to the building by a dramatic two story lobby with an open monumental stair, wood paneling on the elevator core, and a custom coffee bar area complete with plasma monitors.

The second floor of the building contains additional conference rooms, offices and the executive area, which is cantilevered off the back of the building in a glass enclosure, thus maximizing views to the surroundings and the lake.

To help promote good health and exercise, the employees are encouraged to use the full-service exercise facility, complete with locker rooms and showers, located in the lower level. All rooms are burnished block. The lower level, tucked into the earth, was an opportunity for masonry enclosed records storage that met insurance regulations for privacy, access and retention, saving the client costs for off-site storage facilities.

Neumann/Smith Architecture completed the design development drawings for competitive pricing from developers for a sale/lease back approach, allowing the owner to fully understand the cost of the project. After reviewing the developer proposals, the owner decided to own vs. rent and engaged one of the developers to construct the new Headquarters in a more traditional general contractor approach with a guaranteed maximum price.

DIV. 4: Brick: The Belden Brick Company.
DIV. 7: Membrane: Firestone; Insulated Metal Panels: Metl-Span.
DIV. 8: Window, Curtainwall, and Entrances: Kawneer; Wood Doors: Oshkosh; Revolving Door: Boon Edam; Overhead Doors: Cornell; Interior Aluminum Door Frames: 
Wilson Partitions. 
DIV. 9: Wall Panels: Wall Technology.
DIV. 10: Operable Partitions: Hufcor.
DIV. 12: Drinking Fountains: Elkay.  

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