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Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Here's a First Look at Facebook's Amazing New Campus By Frank Gehry

Facebook (FB) already has 2,000 employees at its headquarters in Menlo Park, Calif. But it's preparing for a major expansion. Eventually, its current location—the East Campus—will hold 6,600 employees. Another 2,800 will occupy a second site, the West Campus, across the Bayfront Expressway.

Facebook has hired Frank Gehry's architecture firm, Gehry Partners, to design a new, sprawling office building which will house those engineers in a big, open space, with walls cleverly angled so the insides don't feel oppressive.

Here are some models and drawings which give an idea of Facebook's new home.

Here's the site. Right now it's undeveloped former industrial land. Environmental remediation starts in two weeks.
(Google Maps)

Mark Zuckerberg and Frank Gehry inspect a scale model of the insides.

(Everett Katigbak, Facebook)

Zuckerberg wanted the space to be one big, open building. 

(Everett Katigbak, Facebook)

But a long, rectangular space would feel oppressive. So Gehry proposed angling the walls to create a more human sense of scale. 

(Everett Katigbak, Facebook)

Here's the results: rows of desks and meeting rooms clustered throughout the building. You'll be able to walk from one end to the other without passing through a door. Note the looping ramp in the upper left—that gets you from the basement to the first floor to the roof.
(Frank Gehry/Gehry Partners)

The roof will be planted with grass, trees, and a vegetable garden. It's not just pretty—green roofs cut heating and cooling. 

(Frank Gehry/Gehry Partners)

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