Google vs. Apple: Architecture Edition

Google vs. Apple: Architecture Edition

Mike Tyson
Aug 15, 2011

When you think about office buildings, you're more often than not greeted by architecture that's more "YAWWN" than awe-inducing. Plain looking glasses boxes, huddled around one another in an office park or rising towers are par for the course, and only rarely do newer buildings exhibit anything beyond 4-wall utilitarianism. But within the past few months, two major tech companies...the two biggest players in fact...have made some promising moves in the field of architectural design — one in the suburbs and one in the city — both sure to impress. We've shown you some inspiring interiors and now it comes time for the exteriors...

At the end of 2010 Google closed on a massive real estate deal in New York City. They purchased 111 Eighth Ave at the cost of $1.9 billion, netting the city a cool $46 millon in taxes alone. It was the largest purchase of real estate in the US of the year and it was also Google's most expensive purchase of the year. The nearly 3 million sq/f building sits in Chelsea and has the second largest footprint of any building in NYC. Not only does this mega purchase read as a mark of prosperity for the ever growing online giant, but it announces Google's confidence in the NY real estate market.

The second building to discuss is Apple's new Cupertino "mothership" designed by Foster + Partners that they hope to build in the city they already call home. The new HQ is massive in size and looks like a giant Cheerio from space that landed in a beautifully manicured field. The circular building made of all curving glass will hold 20,000 employees, have an indoor parking garage, a 3,000 person cafeteria, and feature numerous environmentally friendly features. They hope to break ground starting next year and complete the project in 2015. Jobs presented the building to the Cupertino City Council and received nothing but startled admiration and encouragement from the city. You can view much more information and imagery by checking out PDFs released on the project: Intro / Site Plan & Landscaping / Floorplans / Renderings

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