Cupertino, California has long been associated with the Apple brand and, twenty years on from the completion of the Apple Campus, work is under way just a mile across town to create a new, ambitious Campus 2 using the ideas put forward by former boss Steve Jobs. A few months before his death, Jobs was keen to create a futuristic, expensive ring-shaped building in the town that would house 13,000 staff in 2.8 million square feet and include a courtyard, cafeterias, gym and its own power source. The original plans started with a 175 acre proposal and a $3 billion budget but how is the construction of the new Apple Headquarters faring nearly two years on?
What do we know so far about the design of the new Apple Headquarters?
The artistic impressions of the final building at Campus 2 are remarkable to say the least and it seems that early nicknames of the “iSpaceship” are justified. This really is a futuristic plan with some strange design features and the whole, ring-shaped building looks like it has recently crash-landed onto a wooded area of California. Among the more interesting features are the underground auditorium for future announcements and presentations, the fact that 80% of the redeveloped land will be green spaces and the undeniable love of curves. Fans have been intrigued by the idea of curved glass in Apple designs for a while, especially since the recent announcement of an “iWatch” style gadget, but it seems that all the curved glass is going into this design instead. Trees are another big deal with this creation, with 7000 apparently being planted, and Apple are keen to improve their green image and make the whole building energy efficient.
These plans look great on the surface but they are full of problems
The design and vision involved in this new Apple Headquarters is undeniably impressive; however, the majority of press on the subject right now is negative and this is simply due to the fact that the whole venture has been problematic from the start. The key issue here is money; the project is now $2 billion over a budget that was already excessive and the disenchanted stockholders and investors, who have been concerned by the fact that Apple are no longer the leaders of the market, need something a lot different to be appeased. Additionally, the current attempts to trim the budget are putting the finishing date even further back and it is hard to scale down this project when the designs are so extreme and the creators are trying to bring the designs of a much-loved, deceased boss to life.
The ambitious Campus 2 project in Cupertino is clearly having a few difficulties; designers are questioning the logic of the building compared to the new open-plan, adaptable Facebook building, investors are complaining about the blatant disregard for expense and the company are having to work to the ridiculous desires of a leader no longer with them. Jobs knew exactly what he was getting into from the start and appreciated the immense cost of his ideas but, now that Apple have a budget beyond their control and are a year behind schedule, it seems that people are less than enthusiastic about the building. The construction of the new Apple Headquarters is due to finish in 2016 but only time will tell if that is true.
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