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
The owner of Hill House is Scott Croyle, senior vice president of design at HTC. At two bedrooms, 2 1/2 baths and a study, the home is just large enough to share with his wife and son. Its modest scale allowed Bernstein to emphasize quality materials over quantity of space.
"It's almost a negative value in that (tech) community," said Bernstein of over-the-top homes. "There's a real emphasis on not seeking a mansion right away." — sfgate.com
Take the public transportation provided by corporate shuttle buses from the likes of Apple, Google, Facebook, and others. It’s not news that these shuttles, and the big digital tech companies that run them, are changing the fabric of San Francisco as we’ve known it. What feels new is that it’s not enough to say that change is coming soon. It’s already, very much here. — wired.com
"They felt some of those things were too flashy and not in keeping with the kind of the culture of Facebook, so they asked us to make it more anonymous. Frank (Gehry) was quite willing to tone down some of the expression of architecture in the building." — gawker.com
Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang today announced that his company has begun work on a new campus. The building, designed by renowned architecture firm Gensler, will be located "directly across the street" from Nvidia's current headquarters in Santa Clara, California. "The new NVIDIA building will capture the ambition and imagination of our people," says Huang. "It will be the symbol, the physical manifestation, of our vision for the company." — theverge.com
Steve Jobs talked about his connection to the outdoors. So we said, 'Let's take that approach. Let's make sure every employee has access to the outdoors within one floor.' So we took a series of two-story buildings and stacked them on top of each other, and put gardens in between them. — latimes.com
Google has hired Ingenhoven Architects, a German firm that specializes in sustainable architecture and has completed award-winning green designs from Sydney to Stuttgart, to develop plans for what could total nearly 600,000 square feet of space. Google currently owns or leases about 4.3 million square feet of space in Mountain View, according to its securities filings. — mercurynews.com
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