Continental officially opened its new corporate headquarters on December 13, 2023, at a ceremony held in Hanover, Germany. The campus on Hans-BÃ¶ckler-Allee marks a further milestone for the technology company in its more than 150-year history. â€œWe have created a place where our vision, values and culture can come alive in an open, connected and sustainable working environment. It is an expression of our sense of togetherness and a symbol of our long-term aspirations,â€ said Continental CEO Nikolai Setzer at the opening ceremony in Hanover on Wednesday.
Among the more than 150 guests were prominent representatives from business, politics and culture, including Lower Saxonyâ€™s minister president Stephan Weil and Hanoverâ€™s mayor Belit Onay. â€œThe new corporate headquarters is a clear and architecturally impressive commitment from Continental to Lower Saxony and its state capital of Hanover. Continental is a strong and reliable business partner and an important employer in the region. I hope the employees feel at home at the new campus and wish the entire company a successful future,â€ remarked minister president Weil.
â€œWith its former headquarters at KÃ¶nigsworther Platz and on Vahrenwalder StraÃŸe, Continental left an enduring impression on the city of Hanover. And it has done so once again with this new impressive building â€“ which also marks the eastern gateway to the city. With its modern, sustainable architecture and the innovative utilization concept, the building is a perfect fit for Hanover,â€ said Mayor Onay.
The new Continental campus comprises six buildings. A prominent feature of the complex is a suspended bridge spanning 75 meters, which crosses Hans-BÃ¶ckler-Allee to link the northern and southern parts of the campus.
Open-space concept fosters flexibility and agile collaboration
Since December 1, 2023, around 2,400 employees from the group functions as well as the Tires and ContiTech group sectors have been working at the campus, an integrated open-space concept with areas for interaction and collaboration as well as quiet zones for focused work. Thanks to state-of-the-art communication and media equipment, work can be organized with a high degree of flexibility. Instead of assigned workstations, employees can choose where they want to work using a desk booking system. â€œWe chose the architecture with functionality in mind. It will enhance our performance and foster value creation,â€ underscored Setzer. â€œThe layout of the building will strengthen our culture of innovation and networking by facilitating informal, interdisciplinary interaction between our teams. This physical proximity will ensure intensive exchange and an inspiring, creative working environment.â€
New campus sets sustainability standards
At the same time, the new corporate headquarters is a visible sign of Continentalâ€™s sustainability ambitions. The complex meets the German governmentâ€™s criteria for climate-friendly new buildings and, accordingly, the requirements for its sustainable building quality seal. Additional equipment and operating features make the new headquarters one of the most sustainable office buildings in Europe. The roofs of the parking garages, for example, are fitted with solar panels.
Rainwater is collected, and a geothermal system harnesses the Earthâ€™s energy to heat and cool the building, largely covering its requirements. The green roof areas are also equipped with photovoltaic systems that generate up to 300,000 kilowatt hours of electricity a year, which is used, for example, to charge electric cars and bicycles at 100 charging points in the two parking garages.
When the open-plan office areas were designed, particular attention was paid to the use of natural materials such as wood, stone and natural fibers. Slatted ceilings and mobile partitions dampen acoustics to achieve a working environment that is both pleasant and sustainable.
The new corporate headquarters was designed by Munich-based architecture firm Henn. Following the official cornerstone-laying ceremony in 2019, the company moved into the new building in November 2023, around two years later than planned due to the pandemic and significant material shortages.
Continental develops pioneering technologies and services for sustainable and connected mobility of people and their goods. Founded in 1871, the technology company offers safe, efficient, intelligent and affordable solutions for vehicles, machines, traffic and transportation. In 2022, Continental generated sales of â‚¬39.4 billion and currently employs around 200,000 people in 57 countries and markets