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From Site Selection magazine, April 2011

Scripted Construction

A pharmacy services provider continues to grow its corporate campus.

Express Scripts’ latest facility is being built with tilt-up panels.
Photo courtesy of Clayco.

t. Louis-based Express Scripts, a large pharmacy benefit management company, is rapidly growing its corporate campus in North St. Louis County. The latest project is a 227,000-sq.-ft. (21,088-sq.-m.) structure which will be the company's third office building and fourth facility at its campus.

The site of the new facility is near the Express Scripts Technology & Innovation Center, which formally opened in June, and its two headquarters buildings on the campus of the University of Missouri-St. Louis. Express Scripts chose the site back in 2005.

The $70-million project will bring together functions now performed at several sites in the St. Louis area. Approximately 1,500 Express Scripts employees will move into the new facility upon completion, and the company will create 150 jobs in the area within two years of opening the building, which is scheduled to be finished during the fourth quarter of 2011.

A recent independent study found that Express Scripts generates about $1 billion in economic benefits for Missouri each year. Edward C. Lawrence, Ph.D., finance professor at the University of Missouri-St. Louis College of Business, conducted the study.

"As the report shows, Express Scripts provides significant financial benefit to Missouri — nearly $1 billion in 2010 — and is poised to continue these high-value contributions to the state over the next decade," Dr. Lawrence said. "The expansion of its headquarters is another step in the mutually beneficial partnership between the company and the state."

In addition, conservative projections for spending and growth indicate that the company will produce $10.5 billion in economic benefits over the next decade for the St. Louis metropolitan area and the State of Missouri.

"By increasing our operational efficiencies, development of this new site advances Express Scripts' mission of making the use of prescription drugs safer and more affordable," said George Paz, chairman, president and CEO of Express Scripts. "It also continues our commitment to attracting a high-quality, diverse workforce from the St. Louis metropolitan area."

Design-build firm Clayco has been the builder for all four of the Express Scripts buildings, and is collaborating with Paric Corp. on the fourth building. In April 2007 the two firms completed the initial headquarters for Express Scripts after just 17 months.

"This will be a multifunctional facility that will reflect the same high standards and quality as our past work for Express Scripts," said Tom Strickland, Clayco senior project manager. "This is a complex project in terms of schedule and the scale of the structure's tilt-up panels, but we are confident that we will meet our aggressive deadline and provide design features that will enhance the corporate environment for Express Scripts and their employees. We will also be integrating a variety of sustainable design elements into the project and pursuing LEED certification."

Concrete Strategies is erecting the facility's tilt-up panels and structural steel frame in seven weeks, employing massive concrete panels that are nearly 60 ft. high and 30 ft. wide, the heaviest weighing 230,000 pounds. The panels, which will feature large exterior windows that are 20 ft. wide, were braced with helical ground anchors to the outside, rather than the inside as is commonly the case, in order to accelerate the project and accommodate structural steel construction.

Last June, Express Scripts opened its 224,000-sq.-ft. (20,809-sq.-m.) Technology & Innovation Center, a high-tech facility that added 300 jobs.

"It was important to locate the Center — so central to our mission at Express Scripts — very close to our world headquarters campus," Paz said. "The Express Scripts Technology & Innovation Center advances our long-standing commitment to make the use of prescription drugs safer and more affordable. Our Home Delivery pharmacy technology is second to none, enabling us to virtually eliminate dangerous errors, drive down unnecessary costs, and improve safety, service and therapy adherence."

This aerial photo and illustration depicts the current and future corporate campus of Express Scripts.
Photo Courtesy of Express Scripts

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