Lego has announced the opening of a new campus in Billund, Denmark, inspired by a painting of the toymaker’s famous plastic blocks in billionaire owner Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen’s office.
The first phase of the quirky C.F. Møller Architects-designed project, which when completed in 2021 will span 54,000 square meters and will house 2,000 Lego staff, opened on October 28. Lego-style bricks appear in the exterior walls and two gigantic yellow blocks are perched on the roof.
Niels B. Christiansen, CEO of the Lego Group, said that the workspace “reflects our values” and “instills a sense of fun.” Adding, “Our mission is to inspire children so it’s important we provide our talented colleagues with an environment that is playful and inspires creativity and innovative thinking.”
The Lego Group was founded in Denmark in 1932 by Ole Kirk Kristiansen. Its name comes from the Danish words LEg GOdt, which mean “play well.” Nowadays ownership of a 75% stake in Lego is split evenly between Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen, Sofie Kirk Kristiansen, Thomas Kirk Kristiansen and Agnete Kirk Thinggaard.
The new campus has a focus on sustainability and Lego confirmed that builders have covered the roof of the nearby parking garage with 4,150 solar panels to produce more than 1 million kWh, which will supply half of the energy of the campus.
The Danish toymaker has largely weathered a growing consumer backlash against plastic-based products but continues to trial initiatives to bolster its sustainability record. Lego has invested $110 million (1 billion Danish kroner) in a project to replace petroleum in its construction blocks by 2030 and unveiled a pilot scheme for bricks to be recycled in the United States earlier this month.
Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen said in 2016 his mission was to “inspire and develop the builders of tomorrow” but promised a “continued ambition to leave a positive impact on the planet, which future generations will inherit.”