Months before his passing in 2011, Steve Jobs - co-founder and CEO of Apple - presented his plan to the city of Cupertino (which has been jokingly named "Appletino" due to the abundance for Apple employees who reside there.), in the heart of California's Santa Clara Valley. After six years of delays and heavy construction, being followed thanks to drone footage, Apple Park is nearly complete.
5-million square-feet of asphalt and concrete, that were previously used as an HP office park, have been transformed into grassy fields and over 9,000 drought-resistant trees native to the region. The futuristic, ring-shaped main structure is not a spaceship, but a campus, that uses solar energy through 17 megawatts worth of rooftop solar panels. This environmentally-conscious building is predicted to not require heating or air conditioning for roughly nine months out of the year. Apple Park is the largest construction project in Cupertino since the Vallco shopping mall in the 1970s.
"Steve’s vision for Apple stretched far beyond his time with us. He intended Apple Park to be the home of innovation for generations to come,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. "The workspaces and parklands are designed to inspire our team as well as benefit the environment. We’ve achieved one of the most energy-efficient buildings in the world and the campus will run entirely on renewable energy.” Tim plans to move his office to Apple Park.
"Steve invested so much of his energy creating and supporting vital, creative environments. We have approached the design, engineering and making of our new campus with the same enthusiasm and design principles that characterize our products,” said Jony Ive, Apple’s chief design officer. "Connecting extraordinarily advanced buildings with rolling parkland creates a wonderfully open environment for people to create, collaborate and work together. We have been extremely fortunate to be able to work closely, over many years, with the remarkable architectural practice Foster + Partners.”
In April the campus will open to 12,000 employees, though construction will continue through the summer. Employees can enjoy the 100,000 square-foot fitness center, a pond within the interior ring, an orchard, and 2 miles of walking paths. Along with research and development facilities, Apple Park will have a visitor center and public cafe, and of course an Apple store. Another key feature will be the 1,000 seat auditorium named "Steve Jobs Theatre".
"Steve was exhilarated and inspired by the California landscape, by its light and its expansiveness. It was his favorite setting for thought. Apple Park captures his spirit uncannily well,” said Laurene Powell Jobs. "He would have flourished, as the people of Apple surely will, on this luminously designed campus.”
"The design will help the company recruit, and also reflects how Apple is always pushing the envelope on technology," said Mina Chow, a senior lecturer at University of Southern California School of Architecture. "Corporate headquarters are all about making a statement. Even when you had the period of emperors and kings, it’s all about making a statement. Architecture is the identity of a culture. We build what we believe we are.”
(First & last) Images Credit: Apple
About Apple: "Apple revolutionized personal technology with the introduction of the Macintosh in 1984. Today, Apple leads the world in innovation with iPhone, iPad, Mac, Apple Watch and Apple TV. Apple’s four software platforms — iOS, macOS, watchOS and tvOS — provide seamless experiences across all Apple devices and empower people with breakthrough services including the App Store, Apple Music, Apple Pay and iCloud. Apple’s more than 100,000 employees are dedicated to making the best products on earth, and to leaving the world better than we found it." - Apple.com
Sources: Apple | 9to5mac