Facebook is all set to break ground on a giant new campus in Menlo park for housing 2800 of its employees by early 2013. The design for the new HQ extension was drafted by renowned architect Frank Gehry who has a history of designing iconic buildings. Gehrys creations usually spell magic - The Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao designed by him caused a noticeable increase in the citys tourism revenue as architecture enthusiasts from world over flocked over to wonder at the marvel. Tech behemoths hiring star architects to design their offices is not unheard of these days and we are just as excited as them to see what these massive investments bring.Zuckerbergs enthusiasm for the project is palpable in his words:
The idea is to make the perfect engineering space: one giant room that fits thousands of people, all close enough to collaborate together. It will be the largest open floor plan in the world, but it will also have plenty of private, quiet spaces as well. The roof of the building will be a park that blends into the community with a long walking trail, a field and lots of places to sit. From the outside it will appear as if youre looking at a hill in nature.
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Everett Katigbak, Facebook’s Environmental Design Manager, unveiled the campus expansion plans with a post on Facebook yesterday:
At every step of planning the new building, Frank has taken into account our engineering culture. It will be a large, one room building that somewhat resembles a warehouse. Just like we do now, everyone will sit out in the open with desks that can be quickly shuffled around as teams form and break apart around projects. There will be cafes and lots of micro-kitchens with snacks so that you never have to go hungry. And we’ll fill the building with break-away spaces with couches and whiteboards to make getting away from your desk easy.
We’ve paid just as much attention to the outside as well. The exterior takes into account the local architecture so that it fits in well with its surroundings. We’re planting a ton of trees on the grounds and more on the rooftop garden that spans the entire building. The raw, unfinished look of our buildings means we can construct them quickly and with a big emphasis on being eco-friendly. Of course, we’ll maintain our current campus and use an underground tunnel to connect the two.
Image Courtesy: Facebook Frank Gehry
Facebook’s current headquarters
Apple’s new proposed headquarters