Microsoft announces major overhaul of its Redmond campus

Nov 30, 2017, 12:30
Microsoft announces major overhaul of its Redmond campus

Microsoft has announced it's going to renovate and expand its Redmond, Washington headquarters in a bid to modernise the business' campus. Set to start in earnest in fall 2018, the project will see 18 new buildings and 2.5 million square feet of new office space added to the campus. The expansion will add enough room for 8,000 more people, and the construction itself will involve around 2,500 construction and development jobs over the course of the five to seven years it will take to complete.

A notable element of the project is Microsoft's plans to construct several underground parking garages with the intention of making the campus car-free and suitable for walking and bicycles. It's also believed that 12 buildings will be knocked down and replaced with 18 buildings instead, many of which are double in height. The space will be divided into what it calls "team neighborhoods". We prize our relationship with the City of Redmond and will work closely with officials on the approval for campus and building architectural designs, engineering, building permit review and land use code compliance. But as its ongoing search for a second headquarters highlights in no uncertain terms, the space-constrained Puget Sound region has few large undeveloped areas appropriate for an expansion that would accommodate up to 50,000 workers-the number Amazon said it may someday employ at its HQ2.

Microsoft's modern campus overhaul isn't as futuristic as the Apple Park, but the company says it's a major step forward for its culture, substantially expanding its headquarters with modern workplaces and creating 2,500 construction and development jobs in the area.

Tech companies, in an unending contest to attract the most talented employees they can, have long sought to out-do each other with perks, many of which center on workspaces that incorporate amenities for life and play.

Brad Smith, Microsoft's president and chief legal officer, said the new campus will be more open and less formal. The campus will also be connected to WA-520 on both sides and it will tie into the future Redmond Technology Transit Station linking the campus to Link Light Rail in 2023.

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