BASF invests in structural infrastructure at the Ludwigshafen Site
*Center for Work-Life-Management to be created
*Room for 180 additional children at LuKids day care center
*Renovated Feierabendhaus to be reopened
*Visitor center and archive under one roof in the future
*High-rise modernization and new office building at gate 2
*Comprehensive shower facility concept already being implemented
*Production capacities to be increased
“We are constantly developing the Ludwigshafen site further so that it is always state-of-the-art and remains successful in international competition. In addition to investments in production, this involves modernization and targeted development of the structural infrastructure,” said Dr. Bernhard Nick, Site Manager of the BASF SE Ludwigshafen Verbund site. “In the process, we are using solutions that fit the style of BASF by bringing together the time-tested with the modern. We are also attentive to the needs of our employees and are sensitive to our social responsibility in the Rhine-Neckar Metropolitan Region,” Nick continued.
Together with Hans-Carsten Hansen, President Human Resources, Nick presented the status of current and planned BASF construction measures in Ludwigshafen both inside and outside of the site fence at a press conference held in Ludwigshafen today, August 26, 2011.
Something that is new to the business world of Germany is a new Center for Work-Life Management that is being created in the next two years in direct proximity to the site. This center will bundle the diverse activities of BASF in the areas of career and family, sports and promotion of healthy living, and social and nursing care counseling at a single location. It will be built on the grounds between gate 2 and the Feierabendhaus, where the BASF day care center LuKids South is already located.
The day care offerings of LuKids for small children between the ages of six months and three years will be increased to accommodate a total of 250 children. Up until now, BASF SE has accommodated a total of 70 children at two locations in Ludwigshafen. After the expansion, the second location in the city district Pfingstweide will be closed. The ten places for temporary care at LuKids adhoc will remain at the LuKids South location.
A contribution to the compatibility of career and family
“ We want to offer the option of high-quality and flexible child care to as many parents as possible who work at BASF. This gives them the chance to better combine their career and family obligations and return to their work life after the birth of their children according to their personal planning ,” said Hans-Carsten Hansen, explaining the decision to expand the child care offerings.
In addition to LuKids, a modern health club will be established. This will include a comprehensive training infrastructure as well as advice and workshop offerings. The goal is to provide an attractive offering to employees for the maintenance of their health near the workplace, one that also contributes to greater fitness in the later years of work.
A team “Compatibility of career and family”, as well as the social counseling service of the BASF Social Foundation, will also be located at the new Center for Work-Life Management. The social counseling service covers a broad spectrum of services, ranging from debt and addiction counseling to guidance for psychosocial problems. The offerings will be extended to include nursing care counseling, which will help arrange nursing care services in cooperation with a service provider that operates nationwide. In future, more employees at BASF will have to make arrangements for nursing care for their relatives. The company wants to face this challenge proactively by offering comprehensive counseling.
Offerings increase attractiveness as an employer
“We want to employ the best team in the industry. We also want to ensure that we offer our employees optimal conditions for being this team,” explained Hansen. He is convinced that with the new Center for Work-Life-Management, BASF will become a pioneer among German companies and will continue to become more attractive as an employer. “The demographic shift is creating new challenges for the ability of our employees to work. We are actively addressing these topics with an integrated concept that is equally responsive to different life situations,” Hansen continued.
In addition, BASF’s Feierabendhaus will again be available as an event location and cafeteria starting at the end of the year. After a renovation period totaling 18 months, the Feierabendhaus will again open its doors with a celebratory concert on November 27, 2011, just in time for the 90-year anniversary of BASF´s cultural sponsoring. To mark the occasion, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra London will play under the direction of conductor Georges Prêtre. On the day before, BASF is planning a family day at the Feierabendhaus with a large number of activities for young and old alike.
In addition to projects outside of the site, several construction plans are also currently being implemented at the site. Also in this area BASF is pursuing the approach of maintaining buildings using intelligent solutions as long as fire codes and other regulations do not stand in the way of an efficient renovation. Where necessary, new buildings are being built on a targeted basis.
Looking back and looking ahead under one roof
At BASF gate 2, the first preparations for the expansion of the BASF Visitor Center are currently underway. This is made possible through the relocation of the shower facility that was previously accommodated in the same building. In a first step, the Company Archive of BASF will be integrated into the building of the Visitor Center, thus making it even more accessible to outside guests. “It is already the case today that the Visitor Center is a real visitor magnet during the week and especially on the Saturdays that it is open. With the archive under the same roof, a fascinating combination is being created that invites visitors to look both back into the past and look forward into the future of BASF,” said Dr. Bernhard Nick.
The modernization of the neighboring Friedrich Engelhorn building – named after the founder of BASF – is currently running parallel to this. The building, which was opened in 1957, comprises 20 stories and is 102 meters tall, making it the tallest office building in Germany until 1962. Today it hosts a number of marketing and administrative units of BASF. In addition to the façade, the current modernization includes the office spaces and technical infrastructure of the building.
Some of the office buildings and storage spaces located near the Friedrich Engelhorn building are currently being prepared to be torn down. The previous company archive was located there as well. Further use of the building would have been associated with great expense and was thus not cost effective. At this location, an office building will be built by 2015. It will provide space for a cafeteria and several lecture and seminar rooms.
A further component of the investments in the infrastructure of the Ludwigshafen plant is a new concept for shower facilities that can be used by employees of BASF and contractor companies. For two shower facilities, the concept provides for incremental modernization; the previous shower facilities at gate 2 and gate 3 will be relocated due to the construction of a new building in the south section of the site. By the end of 2013, a building with changing rooms and showering facilities for 3,800 employees will be provided. It will be located between gate 1 and gate 7, where it is convenient to access by transportation. It will also have easy access to the rail station in the south section of the plant, where the new commuter rail connection will begin offering service starting in 2015.
Investments in innovative products
A series of investments in production is currently being implemented. For example, as already announced, BASF is building a second production plant for Hexamoll® DINCH, doubling production capacity to 200,000 tons per year due to strong demand for this innovative plasticizer. BASF is also currently building the world’s largest production facility for the aroma chemical L-menthol at the Ludwigshafen site. A few weeks ago, the new distillation column of the plant was brought to the Ludwigshafen site via oversize transport. It is to be commissioned in 2012. With L-menthol, BASF is adding another attractive product to the citral value chain. This investment will create about 35 new jobs in Ludwigshafen.
By the end of 2011, the Styrodur® C plant will be expanded by 220,000 m3 to 1.52 million m3. As already reported at the beginning of August, BASF will be responding to the increased demand for innovative insulating materials for housing construction. The expansion work is occurring during ongoing operation, with completion scheduled for the end of 2011. Furthermore, the company is currently modernizing its acetylene plant, one of the site’s most important production facilities at the front of different value chains. The incremental implementation in the next four to five years safeguards the long-term supply of acetylene at the Ludwigshafen site.
The construction work that began in the spring of last year for the third construction phase of the intermodal transport terminal is running according to plan and should be complete by spring 2012. The terminal will be expanded to a total of 13 transshipment platforms and eight portal cranes. In the future, up to 500,000 loading units will be able to be handled annually in the terminal. That is 200,000 more loading units than today. The expanded terminal will cover 260,000 square meters, which corresponds to approx. 40 soccer fields.
The measures for further development of production are a component of investment planning within the scope of the ongoing Ludwigshafen Site Agreement. At the end of 2010, the company management and employee representatives came to an agreement on a variety of matters, including the investment of a total of €9 to 10 billion for the future viability of the Ludwigshafen Verbund site by 2015. From this total amount, €1.15 to 1.25 billion per year is to be provided for investments, modernization, and maintenance measures.
For the construction projects named above, BASF is placing great emphasis on the aspects of sustainability and energy efficiency. A number of BASF products related to all aspects of construction, ranging from insulating materials to concrete additives to tile adhesives, will be used in the implementation of these plans.
Photos from today’s press conference will be available for download starting at 2 pm at www.basf.com/pressphoto-database Keyword „BASF SE“, Search term „structural infrastructure“.
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