Sherwin Proposes Second HQ Office Tower


Sources familiar with the new Sherwin-Williams company headquarters in downtown Cleveland have reportedly said that the global coatings company is considering adding a second office tower to the project.

A recent report from NEOtrans in Cleveland Magazine explains that three sources with the HQ2 is planned for development at the conclusion of the first phase, potentially due to the company’s employment growth.

Project Background

In September 2019, the company announced that it had begun exploring options for a new HQ. As part of the exploratory process, Sherwin said it was considering multiple potential sites, including locations in Cleveland (where it’s been headquartered since 1930), Northeast Ohio and several other states.

In February 2020, Sherwin announced that it had decided to continue its relationship with Northeast Ohio by finalizing plans to build a new global headquarters and research and development center in Cleveland and the surrounding area. The decision came after a months-long competitive site selection process.

Preliminary plans called for an investment of at least $600 million to build both facilities. The new HQ is set to be located in downtown Cleveland and be about 1 million square feet. The planned new R&D center would be in Brecksville, a suburb of Cleveland, and would serve as the corporate anchor for a new mixed-use development project and would be approximately 500,000 square feet.

The two facilities are slated to house more than 3,500 employees with room for growth, according to the company. The facilities would add a minimum of 400 jobs over time, an 11% increase to the company’s current workforce.

Then, in September of that year, Sherwin announced key partners for the building of the new headquarters and research and development center. Additionally, the timeline was shifted after activities were stalled due to COVID-19, with transition expected in 2024.

In 2021, Sherwin presented its preliminary plans for its new R&D facility. The plans called for a 600,000-square-foot campus that will reportedly be responsible for product development, coatings research, color technology and process engineering. The plan was to break ground no later than the fourth quarter of that year, with an expected transition into the new facilities by 2024.

The following month, Sherwin announced the selection of five minority construction management firms for its Building Our Future project. The firms are based in Northeast Ohio and are either minority- or female-owned. The companies joining the project are:

  • Adrian Maldonado & Associates (Berea, Ohio);
  • The AKA Team (Cleveland);
  • Ozanne Construction Company, Inc. (Cleveland);
  • R. L. Hill Management Services, Inc. (Solon, Ohio); and
  • Regency Construction Services, Inc. (Brook Park, Ohio).

The initial set of selected firms will provide construction management services, with four of the five also providing skilled trades employees that are able to perform activities such as carpentry, millwork and painting.

Sherwin reported that it had collaborated with the City of Cleveland, the City of Brecksville, Cuyahoga County, the State of Ohio and the Port Authority, to establish and publish requirements for inclusion, diversity and equity, community engagement and community participation related to the project.

Then, in July this year, Sherwin's current downtown Cleveland headquarters was reportedly sold for $48.5 million as construction continued for its new global headquarters and research and development center.

The historic building, in addition to a piece of riverfront property, was purchased by local businessman Dan Gilbert’s real estate company, Bedrock. The purchase includes over 1 million square feet of office space at Landmark Office Towers, the Breen Technology Center and the former Baltimore and Ohio Railroad Building.

Cuyahoga County public records showed that Bedrock paid $38 million for the 900,000-square-foot Landmark Building and $10.5 million for Sherwin’s 140,000-square-foot Breen Technology Center. The purchase included the neighboring 126-year-old railroad depot, in addition to 9.67 acres of riverfront land on which Sherwin-Williams’ parking lots, athletic courts, jogging track, gazebo and greenspace are located. 

Bedrock reports that Sherwin will continue to use the Landmark Office Towers until at least December 2024. After Sherwin-Williams moves out it will evaluate and make plans for the building, Bedrock said.

The real estate company adds that the purchase further advances its Cuyahoga Riverfront Master Plan. The plan reportedly includes the redevelopment of 35-acres of riverfront property, using Tower City Center as a gateway between downtown and the waterfront.

Latest Proposal

According to NEOtrans, the sources spoke on the condition of anonymity, explaining that initial planning and design concepts for the west half of the Sherwin-Williams HQ site are expected by the end of 2024.

The conceptual planning and design will reportedly be about the HQ2 tower in the block south of Frankfort Avenue, possibly including the mixed-use component around the parking deck north of Frankfort.

Specifically, the HQ2 tower is planned at the northeast corner of Superior and West 6th, while the mixed-use project at the southeast corner of St. Clair and West 6th is officially referred to as Sherwin-Williams' “strategic development site.”

If Sherwin-Williams' Building Our Future development team, which is simultaneously constructing the coatings company's new research center in suburban Brecksville, takes the design and construction costs into account, it could move forward with constructing phase two in 2025.

According to company employment data obtained by NEOtrans, Sherwin-Williams may already have at least 1,500 workers that can no longer fit into its new headquarters tower. That tower was designed to accommodate about 3,100 employees.


Tagged categories: Asia Pacific; Business conditions; Business management; Business matters; Business operations; Coating Business; EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa); Good Technical Practice; Industry News; Latin America; North America; Program/Project Management; Projects - Commercial; Sherwin-Williams; Z-Continents

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