Laundromats have recently been closing down in San Francisco, which prompted a Google employee to tweet in response "cost of disruption: washio and others have removed need for laundromat on every block." Who needs laundromats when there's an app for that? Well, people who can't afford to spend...
Google already had building rights for a fifth site overlooking Charleston Park, just east of the current Googleplex [...]
A 2007 lease agreement allows Google to build up to 595,000 square feet of office and commercial space there. [...]
The new plans feature the same futuristic designs by European architects Bjarke Ingels and Thomas Heatherwick that were part of the larger plan debated by the city this year. — mercurynews.com
For some background on the Googleplex expansion plans:Google loses to LinkedIn in Silicon Valley HQ pitchCritical response to Googleplex expansion focuses on suburban development, not architectureGoogle Unveils BIG + Heatherwick Studios Collaboration for New Campus Master Plan
In a blow to Google’s expansion plans, on Tuesday the Mountain View City Council voted to give the search giant roughly a quarter of the office space it had requested for the project, and instead awarded the lion’s share of the city’s future office development –- 1.5 million square feet –- to LinkedIn.
Google received about 500,000 square feet, or about enough to build one of the four buildings it had proposed. — bits.blogs.nytimes.com
How this news will affect BIG and Heatherwick's design for the Googleplex expansion is as of yet undetermined. Earlier today, we learned that Google planned on constructing its new HQ using "crabots", so clearly sights were set on the Mountain View City Council giving the go-ahead. David...
Whatever becomes of Facebook’s corporate future – and therefore the consequential Internet – will play out in the world of Frank Gehry. The architect’s new HQ for Facebook in Menlo Park, MPK20, opened earlier this week with plentiful Instagrammed fanfare, and Facebook recently submitted...
The same week Facebook employees moved into a new Frank Gehry-designed building with a massive green roof, the social media giant submitted plans to Menlo Park for the construction of two office buildings on 58 acres it purchased last year. [...]
Also designed by Gehry, the two office buildings would total 985,719 square feet and have a similar look, feel and height to the new Facebook building across from its main headquarters. — latimes.com
But the Facebook building is something different. [...]
For one, it’s more subdued. ... Gehry held back for Facebook. “From the start, Mark wanted a space that was unassuming, matter-of-fact, and cost effective,” Gehry says in statement, referring to Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg. “He did not want it overly designed.” [...]
The open floor plan has become a cliche. But Facebook helped set the cliche—and it takes the idea so much further than most. — wired.com
“Silicon Valley has been the cradle of a series of innovations that, over the last decades, have propelled technology and [the] world economy, but all of the resources, all of the intelligence, has been invested into the immaterial, the digital realm, the internet,” asserts Bjarke Ingels of...
San Francisco today has the second-highest median income in the United States, but, even using that peg, middle-income San Franciscans can afford less than a sixth of the homes available in town. Every city on the up-and-up must contend with a gap between rich and poor. Yet few have also, like San Francisco, managed to immiserate a relatively well-heeled middle class. — the New Yorker
Silicon Valley is a meticulously researched show [...] and the work spaces that appear on screen are no exception. Production designer Richard Toyon, the man responsible for the visual storytelling, called up friends all over Silicon Valley to get a peek inside the offices of Facebook, Google, Zynga, and others. Security often prevented Toyon from taking pictures inside the buildings, so he made due with mental notes. — fastcodesign.com
Silicon Valley long prided itself on building world-changing technologies from the humble garage, or the nondescript office park. The new spaces are more distinctive, as companies seek to build a consumer profile [...]
[There] is a sense that nothing is permanent, that any product can be dislodged from greatness by something newer. It’s the aesthetic of disruption: We must all change, all the time. And yet architecture demands that we must also represent something lasting. — mobile.nytimes.com
San Francisco is practically the reductio ad absurdum of gentrification: It’s already land limited on three sides by water, and the massive rise of the tech industry over the last few decades has dramatically increased both the population of the area and its wealth. [...]
But the blame shouldn’t go to the tech companies or their employees moving to San Francisco, however despicable some might be. Blame San Francisco for being pleasant, and its policymakers for being foolish — Quartz
Before the buses became a symbol for San Francisco’s gentrification woes, they were just a fleet of several hundred private coaches that whisked some seventeen thousand workers around San Francisco and to and from the Silicon Valley campuses of such companies as Apple, Google, and Genentech. [...]
San Francisco is deep into a second tech boom—and, with it, many less affluent workers are getting priced out of the city. — newyorker.com
The simple logic: Individuals who collaborate are creative. Consequently, all boundaries must disappear, including floors and walls. Private offices no longer exist, not even for top management. The open creative playground is the prevailing fundamental design of the digital economy. Those who don't already have it, have to create it. Stragglers like Microsoft, Yahoo and SAP are gutting their buildings and eliminating many offices. — spiegel.de
My bewilderment quickly yields to a growing sense of dread. How is it that even in the heart of Silicon Valley it’s completely acceptable for smart technology to be buggy, erratic, or totally dysfunctional? ... We are weaving these technologies into our homes, our communities, even our very bodies — but even experts have become disturbingly complacent about their shortcomings. The rest of us rarely question them at all. — Places Journal
Electric car sharing in Paris, dynamic road pricing in Singapore, nationwide smart meters in the UK. “The technology industry is asking us to rebuild the world around its vision of efficient, safe, convenient living,” writes Anthony M. Townsend in an excerpt on Places from his...
The $120 million, 630,000-square-foot complex, called Anton Menlo, is a partnership between Facebook and Northern California residential real estate developer St. Anton Partners. Details of the financial arrangement, including Facebook's investment, were not disclosed.
Designed by Southern California KTGY Group, it will have a mix of studios and one, two and three-bedroom apartments. As part of Facebook's agreement with the city, 15 below-market-rate units are set aside for low-income tenants. — sfgate.com
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