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Houston Chronicle: Shell will consolidate with a new facility

Houston Chronicle image: New Shell Admin Building

Shell’s six-story administrative building on Texas 225 will consolidate office space for as many as 750 employees now scattered in buildings throughout the area.
GENSLER

By KATHERINE FESER
Copyright 2007 Houston Chronicle

What will be the tallest office building in Deer Park is taking shape at the Shell chemical plant and refinery on Texas 225.

A six-story, 172,000-square-foot administrative building is going up on 12 acres at 5900 Texas 225. Jacobs Engineering is the construction manager, and JE Dunn is the general contractor.

The building will consolidate 700 to 750 employees who work in buildings scattered throughout the site. The plant employs 1,700 workers, although they do not all work at the same time because shifts are staggered.

“We had an opportunity to move people whose job functions don’t require them to be near the process unit,” said Dave McKinney, a spokesman for Shell.

“If we can move them farther away from the operations and then team them up with their colleagues, we get a couple of wins out of that. For example, the accounting functions for both the refinery and chemical plant will be close together now.”

Construction began about a year ago, and completion is planned early next year.

Gensler is the project architect. The building is constructed of steel with a precast concrete and glass exterior. A separate 4,300-square-foot metal building will contain a locker room and space for equipment storage.

Both buildings are designed to meet standards to resist hurricanes.

The administrative building sits 5 feet above ground level to avoid flood damage. Among its features are aluminum overhangs that shade the windows, saving energy.

Situated on 1,500 acres, the facility first opened in 1929 as a refinery, and a chemical plant was added in 1941. Some of the buildings will be demolished, and others will be converted for other functions.

The refinery has the capacity to process 340,000 barrels of crude oil per day, making it the sixth-largest in the U.S., McKinney said. The chemical plant processes raw materials to make chemicals that are sold to other companies that make finished products.

KATHERINE FESER

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/business/4986206.html

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