Mercedes-Benz on Monday held the ceremonial ground breaking for its future U.S. headquarters campus in Sandy Springs, with division CEO Dietmar Exler saying the complex is yet another emblem of the German luxury car giant’s commitment to its new home.
Mercedes is one of the biggest names recruited to the Atlanta area in years. The company to date has hired or relocated more than 550 employees to the metro area, and over time is expected to employ 800 to 1,000 workers at its future campus at Barfield and Abernathy roads near Ga. 400.
Gov. Nathan Deal said Mercedes’ decision to locate here is an endorsement of the state’s positive business climate, talent pool, quality of life and schools.
Mercedes and the state announced the company’s relocation to Georgia from New Jersey in January 2015. In that time, the company signed a deal to put its name on the new Atlanta Falcons stadium and also has become active in local charities.
“You have our commitment that we will be an active member contributing to the well-being of your – and now our — community,” Exler said.
Sandy Springs Mayor Rusty Paul credited the work of Deal and Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed in the combined efforts of the state and local governments to recruit Mercedes and create an environment conducive to growth.
“One of the great things about economic development is that it’s not confined to political jurisdictions,” Paul said, pointing to Mercedes work in multiple communities. “Money and economic development and growth and opportunity [are] not limited by political boundaries.”
Mercedes officials said the company will open the headquarters by the second quarter of 2018.
Mercedes is currently working out of temporary offices in Dunwoody near Perimeter Mall, with additional hiring and some parts of the business expected to move from New Jersey with the opening of the campus.
Exler said the campus will feature open floor plans with “less me space, more we space” designed for collaboration. It will also feature employee dining and gym facilities and an on-site daycare.
Trees cleared from the Sandy Springs site will be donated to Camp Southern Ground, a nonprofit that provides services to children with emotional and neuro-developmental disorders that was founded by Atlanta-born musician Zac Brown.
Exler said employees of the company will plant an equivalent amount of trees in the Edgewood community in partnership with Trees Atlanta and construction giant Skanska.
Mercedes-Benz U.S. Headquarters
Location: Barfield and Abernathy roads in Sandy Springs
Size: More 200,000 square feet with space for 1,000 employees
Project team: The project is designed by Gensler, with Skanska serving as the construction manager and JLL as Mercedes’s broker and project manager.
Opening date: Second quarter 2018
Cost: $93 million
Incentives: The state and local governments provided an incentive package of more than $27 million to recruit the company
Sources: Mercedes-Benz, AJC archives