YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

Apple plans to build new headquarters in Cupertino, Calif.

Apple CEO Steve Jobs tells the City Council that the new facility 'looks a little like a spaceship.' It would be built on 150 acres of land the tech giant owns near its existing headquarters.

June 09, 2011|By Nathan Olivarez-Giles, Los Angeles Times
  • An illustration shows the plan for Apples new headquarters in Cupertino, Calif. The ring-shaped building would be four stories tall, with four floors of parking underneath.
An illustration shows the plan for Apples new headquarters in Cupertino,… (Cupertino City Channel )

Apple Inc. Chief Executive Steve Jobs has revealed plans for a new headquarters for the company that "looks a little like a spaceship."

The presentation about the proposed campus, designed to hold 12,000 employees, was made before the City Council in Cupertino, Calif., Apple's present home. The company hasn't formally submitted plans to the city, but the fact that Jobs — who is on medical leave from Apple but still participating in decisions — showed up in person for the presentation Tuesday surprised many in attendance.

The Cupertino City Council posted a video of Jobs' presentation to the video-sharing website YouTube.

Apple's current headquarters can hold only about 2,800 people, Jobs said at the meeting.

"We've got almost 12,000 people in the area," he said. "So we're renting buildings — not very good buildings, either — at an ever-greater radius from our campus and we're putting people in those. And it's clear that we need to build a new campus."

The new facility, as Apple envisions it, would be built on about 150 acres of land that the tech giant owns down the street from its headquarters.

"This land is kind of special to me," Jobs said, noting that Apple bought a large chunk of the land from computer maker Hewlett-Packard Co. last year. "Hewlett and Packard were my idols" as a kid growing up, he said of Bill Hewlett and David Packard, the duo that founded the tech company in 1939, before personal computers existed.

Jobs said that Apple's plan would involve demolishing buildings on the site. The project would increase the landscaping on the site to about 80% from 20% now.

"It's a little like a spaceship landed," he said of the planned facility. "It's a circle, and so it's curved all the way around. As you know if you build things, this is not the cheapest way to build something. There's not a straight piece of glass on this building, it's all curved.

"And we've used our experience in making retail buildings all over the world now, and we know how to make the biggest pieces of glass in the world for architectural use."

The ring-shaped building would be four stories tall, Jobs said, with four floors of parking underneath.

It would also be environmentally friendly, he said, with its own energy production plant on site.

"I think what we're going to end up doing is making the energy center our primary source of power, because we can generate power with natural gas and other ways that can be cleaner and cheaper, and use the grid as our backup," Jobs said.

Mayor Gilbert Wong said in a statement that Cupertino is excited that Apple is moving forward with a new campus, an idea first mentioned to the city in 2006.

"When Apple submits their building plans later this year, we know that we will be looking at a state-of-the-art facility and all the challenges and opportunities that go along with that," Wong said.

The review process for the new Apple campus will be the same as for any other project, with evaluations of environmental impacts, air quality, traffic and other matters, he said.

"The project will come to the City Council for approval in the fall of 2012," Wong said. "Following approval, Apple can submit building permits. Construction will follow, and Apple and the city expect the new campus to be completed by 2015."

Los Angeles Times Articles