If you’re a fan of Apple, you’ve probably heard about their new headquarters currently under construction in California – the Apple Campus 2. It earned the nickname “The Spaceship” for reasons we hopefully don’t need to explain. The huge 176 acre site was designed with Steve Jobs’ input and will house over 13,000 employees.
The main building of the campus is a perfect circle with a circumference of over a mile and a diameter of over 1,500 feet – big enough to lay the Empire State Building down inside it, with room to spare.
As you’d expect from Apple, only the highest quality materials are being used for the building. With an estimated cost of over five billion dollars (although a lot of money, it’s a drop in the ocean of Apple’s vast cash reserves), no short-cuts have been taken. The main building is surrounded by over six kilometres of huge, curved glass panels – some of which are over 46 feet long and 10 feet wide – the largest of their kind in the world. These huge windows even required custom-made machines to lift them into place. The entrance to the campus restaurant will have two enormous glass doors that are over four stories high.
There has been a lot of marketing recently about Apple’s commitment to the environment, and this building fits in with that. It’s supposed to be completely self sufficient – with solar panels on every available surface, recycled water, and an “on site low carbon central plant”. The building can go without heating or air conditioning for 75% of the year, thanks to good natural ventilation.
Over 80% of the huge 176 acre campus will be landscaped, filled with over 7,000 indigenous trees, many of which will be replanted from the original site. Such a large amount of landscaped space is possible thanks to hiding a lot of the on-site car parking underground. If you’ve noticed the huge pile of dirt in the centre of the main building, that’s because Apple has pledged not to remove any dirt from the site – it will all be returned to the grounds.
Apart from the main building, the Apple Campus 2 has a lot more to offer. There’s a new 1,000 seat underground theatre which will be used for all future product launches and events, and a $75 million fitness centre for employees to enjoy. The grounds will be filled with jogging and cycling tracks, and staff will have access to over 1,000 bikes to help get around the huge campus. A huge restaurant takes up a big segment of the building, with space for almost 3,000 employees.
Lots of Apple fans have been flying drones over the construction site to see the latest progress, and you can see one of these videos below.
You can stay up to date with the latest news about the campus over at MacRumours.
Due to open in early 2017, the Apple Campus 2 looks like it will be a very modern and sustainable building, and a very cool place to work! We can’t wait to see more.