If you’ve got a passion for architecture — and particularly if it’s related to tech company headquarters — then you’re going to love the renderings Google has uploaded for proposed new buildings in Mountain View in California. Sweeping curved roofs, transparent glass walls and movable modules are the dominant themes for Google’s new office space.
“With trees, landscaping, cafes, and bike paths weaving through these structures, we aim to blur the distinction between our buildings and nature,” writes David Radcliffe, Google’s Vice President of Real Estate. The plans have been designed by Thomas Heatherwick (of 2012 London Olympics fame) and rising architecture star Bjarke Ingels.
Not everyone is as enthusiastic about the proposals as Google, however. Local residents are worried about the impact that a larger headquarters is going to have on the area’s infrastructure, and there are also concerns that non-Google employees are going to be priced out of properties in the city.
For its part, Google is promising to give back to the local community with a series of bike paths, retail opportunities for businesses in the area, and new features for the local environment (such as owl habitats). Energy-saving measures are also a big part of the plans the company has put forward.
Perhaps the most interesting part of the proposals are the “lightweight block-like structures” which can be moved around inside the buildings. That gives Google the freedom to shift the internal layout of its offices as it changes the projects that it’s working on.
“We chose Mountain View for our headquarters 15 years ago because we love the beauty of the bay, the close proximity to great universities, the family-friendly environment and the chance to work in a city at the heart of Silicon Valley,” says Google’s David Radcliffe. “Today, we want to create office spaces that don’t just provide a great home for Google, but which also work for the city that has given us so much.”
You can see more of the proposals on Google+ or in the video below.
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