Merck headquarters

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Merck & Co., Inc. World Headquarters
Aerial view
General information
Type Corporate headquarters
Architectural style Modernist
Location Whitehouse Station in Readington Township, New Jersey, United States
Address One Merck Drive
Coordinates 40°38′27″N 74°46′39″W / 40.640824°N 74.777627°W / 40.640824; -74.777627Coordinates: 40°38′27″N 74°46′39″W / 40.640824°N 74.777627°W / 40.640824; -74.777627
Construction started 1989
Completed 1990
Inaugurated 1992
Owner Merck & Co.
Technical details
Floor count 3[1]
Floor area 1,600,000 sq ft (150,000 m2), i.e. 900,000 sq ft (84,000 m2) of office space, 700,000 sq ft (65,000 m2) underground parking[2]
Design and construction
Architect Kevin Roche John Dinkeloo and Associates, LLC[1]
Civil engineer Clarke & Rapuano[3]
Other designers Edmund Hollander and Maryanne Connelly[3]

The former Merck headquarters building is a modernist office building located in the Whitehouse Station section of Readington Township, New Jersey, United States.[4] It was designed by Kevin Roche John Dinkeloo and Associates, LLC in the late 1980s for the Merck pharmaceutical company.[5] Over the years it became well known for its various environmentally friendly features.

On October 9, 2012, Merck announced that starting in 2014 it would move its headquarters to the Schering-Plough site (formerly belonging to Ciba, Ciba-Geigy and Novartis) in Summit, New Jersey, acquired in the Nov. 2009 acquisition of Schering, and planned to close the Whitehouse Station headquarters building upon completion of the move in 2015. In October, 2013 Merck reversed course and said its headquarters would move to Kenilworth, New Jersey and that the 88-acre Summit campus would be sold after being vacated on Dec. 31, 2014. [6][7]

Building history[edit]

Constructed in 1990 as a home for the headquarters staff of Merck, the building is most recognizable for its hexagon shape and its nature setting.[2][3] The main building was constructed with a 600-foot (180 m) wide clearing at its center, filled with old-growth trees saved during the construction phase.[3] Further, Merck placed the parking structure underground and created a temporary nursery on-site for the trees removed during construction, in order to make the facility a "corporate cottage in the woods".[3] The building was originally set on 460 acres (190 ha) of property and has since been expanded to a 1,000-acre (4.0 km2) campus with auxiliary buildings.[1][8] The initial site plan foresaw the subsequent addition of two buildings to create a grid of three connected hexagons, however, after a change in management, it was indicated that further construction in the original style would not occur.[1][9] Instead a conventional office block was built adjacent to it known as "Whitehouse Station West".

In the center of the building there is a park with a small lawned sitting area containing a statue given by Merck Germany.

Prior to moving to this location, the Merck headquarters was located in Rahway, New Jersey. The White House Station campus is located on an old dairy farm and the surrounding area is known as a more suburban/rural setting than the area around the Rahway campus.[4][10] As a result, Merck included amenities such as on-site child-care, a fitness center, baseball fields, and a medical services center for employees.[10]

Solar initiative[edit]

In 2008, Merck installed a 1.6-megawatt solar power system consisting of 7,000 panels on 7 acres (2.8 ha) of property.[11] Among the largest installations at a corporate headquarters, the system is also the largest ground-mounted solar power tracking system east of the Mississippi River.[12] In all, it will provide 7% of the site's power and is expected to "reduce carbon dioxide emissions by more than 1,300 tons per year."[12]


  1. ^ a b c d Kevin Roche John Dinkeloo and Associates. "Merck & Co., Inc. World Headquarters". Retrieved 2008-10-10. 
  2. ^ a b TAC (2006). "A Prescription for Continued Satisfaction — Merck’s Worldwide Headquarters Chooses Andover Continuum" (PDF). Retrieved 2008-10-10. [dead link]
  3. ^ a b c d e Raver, Anne (1991-12-22). "Cuttings; Corporate Cottage, Deep in a Forest". NYT. Retrieved 2008-10-10. 
  4. ^ a b Peterson, Iver (1992-11-15). "A Company Move That Hasn't Irked the Neighbors". NYT. Retrieved 2008-10-10. 
  5. ^ Foundation Software (2000). "Who is using Foundation". Retrieved 2008-10-10. 
  6. ^ Merck (2012). "Merck to Move Global Headquarters Within New Jersey". Retrieved 2012-10-09. 
  7. ^ Friedman, Alexi. "In about-face, Merck will shutter Summit campus and make Kenilworth its headquarters", The Star-Ledger, October 1, 2013. Accessed October 16, 2013.
  8. ^ O'Brien, Walter (2008-09-02). "Merck headquarters in Readington to harness the sun with new solar panels". Retrieved 2008-10-10. 
  9. ^ Bowe, Christoper (2006-11-26). "Raising Merck's threshold of pain". Financial Times. Retrieved 2008-10-10. 
  10. ^ a b Mansnerus, Laura (1999-11-21). "It Takes a Village To Make an Office. Ask Mother Merck.". NYT. Retrieved 2008-10-10. 
  11. ^ (2008-08-15). "1.6-MW Solar System Being Built at Merck Headquarters". Retrieved 2008-10-10. 
  12. ^ a b UTC Power (2008-08-14). "Largest Ground-Mounted Solar Power Tracking System East of Mississippi River Being Built at Merck & Co., Inc. Headquarters". Thomson Reuters. Retrieved 2008-10-10.