MONROE, La., March 24, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — CenturyLink, Inc. (NYSE: CTL) officially opened the CenturyLink Technology Center of Excellence at a ribbon cutting ceremony today at its corporate headquarters campus in Monroe, La.
The CenturyLink Technology Center of Excellence includes a technology research and development lab, a network operations center and collaborative office and meeting space. In the Center, employees with network, cloud, information technology and other skills will work together to create innovative products and services for CenturyLink’s customers.
“Today marks an important milestone for CenturyLink and our North Louisiana community as we open the CenturyLink Technology Center of Excellence, a facility that will be a key in driving our company’s future growth,” said Glen F. Post, III, CenturyLink CEO and president. “As CenturyLink transitions from a traditional network communications provider to a growing, integrated provider of advanced IP-enabled network, cloud, hosting, and IT services, it will be increasingly important that we are able to attract the best talent in the world. We believe the Technology Center will help us accomplish this transition successfully.”
Elected officials and community leaders took part in today’s celebration that included an open house of the three-story, 300,000-square-foot facility. Employees will begin moving into the Technology Center Thursday, March 26.
“A key aspect of the Technology Center is the creation of a world-class research and development hub where we will be able to develop, test and run technology innovations that will help shape our future and serve our customers,” Post said. “The facility includes a customer experience center where we can demonstrate CenturyLink’s latest offerings, and a state-of-the art Executive Briefing Center (EBC) that will enable sales and support teams to present our latest solutions to current and prospective customers.”
The architectural firm Moody Nolan designed the CenturyLink Technology Center of Excellence to promote collaboration and innovation with unique workspace options and a goal of adopting a “work anywhere” campus environment which will enable greater collaboration and teamwork.
All employees working on the CenturyLink corporate campus, which includes the Technology Center and the headquarters building, will have VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) service, which will allow them to stay connected whether they are in an office or working from their laptop anywhere inside or outside on the campus grounds.
Under the direction of Yates Construction, the construction management company for the Technology Center, the building is opening on schedule with no lost man hours due to accident or injury on the job.
CenturyLink is also pursuing LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification at the Technology Center. LEED is a rating system devised by the United States Green Building Council to evaluate the environmental performance of a building and encourage sustainable design.
Credits are awarded over multiple categories: site sustainability, water efficiency, energy, materials and resources, indoor environmental quality, innovation and design and regional priority.
The design of the Technology Center included a master plan for the site, substantial utility relocations, a 300,000-square-foot facility, and a five-story parking structure to accommodate more than 1,000 vehicles. The process also yielded a 2.2 acre landscaped courtyard designed to unite the new Technology Center with the existing 365,000-square-foot headquarters building.
CenturyLink made sustainable design a priority and incorporated unique design strategies to pursue a LEED rating. These features are showcased throughout the building to allow the building to perform at a higher efficiency as well as improve the indoor environmental quality for employees.
- Green roof is a mixture of 28 varieties of slow growing vegetation that bloom throughout the year.
- Tankless point-of-source hot water heating in restrooms and break rooms.
- “Smart Building” – controls for mechanical and electrical systems, lighting, View Dynamic Glass intelligent windows, audio visual, security, UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply) and generator backup systems.
- Carpet and systems furniture are 100 percent recyclable.
The building is located in a mature pecan orchard; therefore, it was a priority for the design to minimize the removal of these mature trees. The 80 trees that were removed were milled locally yielding 20,000 square feet of lumber from which veneer paneling and flooring as well as solid material for coffee bar counter-tops throughout the facility were produced. The landscape design for the campus included planting a new tree for each tree removed.
The building also incorporates 37,000 square feet of View Dynamic Glass, making this facility the single largest installation of electrochromic glass in the country. View’s glass leverages nanotechnology and pre-programmed intelligence to tint automatically in response to outside conditions and user preferences, eliminating the need for blinds or shades, as well as providing enhanced occupant experience and improved energy efficiency. Use of electrochromic glazing has been shown to reduce lighting, heating, and cooling loads in typical buildings by 20 percent or more.
CenturyLink set an ambitious goal for the roof design on the project for no roof-mounted mechanical equipment. To accomplish this goal, the design team moved all of the typical rooftop equipment into a separate mechanical building. This equipment includes all back-up generators, chillers and cooling towers. The result is a pristine roof surface finished with vegetated trays (lower roof) and a white membrane (upper roof). These roof surfaces, which are very visible from the adjacent existing headquarters facility, provide a striking visual appearance and introduce the sustainable features of the two materials.
Each floor of the Technology Center has dedicated storage areas for recycling glass, plastic, metal and paper. Items from these collection points will be collected weekly and a similar recycling program will be implemented in the current headquarters building.
CenturyLink’s lighting design has optimized energy performance by 20 percent over the current energy code. High performance luminaries and daylight harvesting will contribute to reduction in energy use goals. Building occupants have control of their environment via low voltage controls within the space as well as task lighting.
CenturyLink actively makes choices to lessen its impact on the environment and ensure employee safety by implementing an effective environmental health and safety management program and by establishing sustainability initiatives. The company also offers customers solutions that enable them to lessen their impact on the environment.
CenturyLink strives to ensure the long-term health of the environment, employee safety, and to join with consumers and businesses to focus on ways to promote and practice intelligent use of resources.