In attendance and speaking at the opening ceremony was Euisun Chung, President of Kia Motors Corporation, who stated: "This new corporate headquarter facility will serve as the control center for our US operations that will soon cover the entire business cycle - from R&D and production to marketing, sales and after service, thereby enabling us to better serve our growing base of US customers".
Now fully operational, the Irvine campus currently employs approximately 400 permanent full-time employees and has the potential to house almost 600 employees at full capacity. The corporate headquarters is a custom-built facility and home to the KMA U.S. sales division, as well as its marketing, public relations, consumer affairs, technical service, research and development, product planning and administration departments. The new facility also houses the KMA western region office and IT services.
The state-of-the-art 100,700 square-foot design center was developed with input from the Kia Motors U.S. design team to ensure an aesthetically and physically functional layout that encourages creativity. It consists of a design studio, a modeling studio that allows up to eight vehicle models to be worked on simultaneously, a milling shop featuring a Zimmerman computerized milling machine, a 2-D presentation room, a color and trim room, a wood/metal shop, a 3-D presentation room that features clearstory windows to allow for viewing indoors under natural light, a paint booth, a private outdoor viewing courtyard, a recreation room, a research library, four conference rooms and a secure, underground garage.
The Irvine corporate campus was designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP in partnership with the City of Irvine to serve as a distinctive architectural gateway to the city and an example of eco-friendly features. The 239,000 square-foot modern glass and steel main structure features a 36,000 square-foot reflecting pool visible to drivers on Interstate 5. Kia was one of the first companies in Irvine to voluntarily install a bioswale system in its parking lot to remove silt and pollution from surface water runoff. The landscaping features drought-resistant plants, and reclaimed water is used for landscaping irrigation and toilets. The exterior glass of the building meets the California Energy Commission's requirements for energy efficiency standards.