BAE Systems


BAE Systems Sterling Heights Facility

Sterling Heights, Michigan

220,000 SF | 20,000 M2

Architecture, Engineering, Lighting Design

Sustainable Programs
LEED for Core & Shell (CS) LEED-CS-Gold

AGC Build Michigan Award for New Construction, Best of Michigan Construction Award, Best Project: Office/Retail/Mixed-Use

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“When selecting SmithGroupJJR, we knew that your team had the experience and expertise to design an excellent facility. What we did not know was how committed your team would be to listening to our needs and creating a facility that was right for BAE Systems.”

—Michael Bocek, Director of Facilities


One of world’s largest global defense contractors, BAE Systems decided to consolidate its operations into one location near its primary customer. The 80-acre site is comprised of two parcels in a largely industrial area, one for a test track and the other for a high bay prototype facility and attached four-story office building. The design creates a highly secure complex—with efficient and secure circulation for employees and customers—and makes a strong statement with a striking physical presence.

Thanks to a substantial portfolio of complex automotive, research and high-security facilities, SmithGroupJJR was well suited to deal with all components of the complex project. The office and prototyping facility create a sleek and arresting form, a parallelogram with a curved and slanted glass curtain wall. The transparent-yet-secure design speaks to the client’s identity, while the shape of the building provides an offset core that allows for large areas of secure space for engineering work activity. The prototyping facility supports the activity of 18 vehicle bays. An adjacent courtyard functions as an event space and a secure display area for BAE Systems products. The office building design features an open floor plan for collaborative work, and also includes the Genesis Center, a sensitive compartmented facility in the building’s interior for private meetings. A model of innovative engineering techniques and sustainable design strategies, it makes a bold and fitting statement for BAE Systems.

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BAE Systems Sterling Heights Facility