Microsoft plans upgrade for Redmond headquarters

Nichole Vega
November 30, 2017

Microsoft is planning a huge upgrade for its Redmond headquarters, aiming to overhaul the 500-acre campus in a new multi-year project.

The campus will primarily be built for pedestrian and bike traffic as all vehicles will be moved to an underground parking facility. "When this project is complete, our main campus will be comprised of 131 buildings - including the equivalent of 180 [American] football fields of new and renovated space".

It is clear that Nadella is looking to revive the work culture at Microsoft, making it a little more collaborative with employees coming out of the closed-door offices and working in a more interactive environment.

"Our goal is to build the most modern workplace, and create the best employee experience in our industry", Microsoft President Brad Smith said in the post.

The plan seeks to demolish up to 12 buildings and make room for an additional 18, which will also be taller (four floors, as opposed to two or three) and be based around more open spaces, meant to encourage collaboration between colleagues.

Microsoft plans upgrade for Redmond headquarters
Microsoft is building a massive new HQ that looks nothing like Apple's

Microsoft announced the development to employees Tuesday evening. It's also believed that 12 buildings will be knocked down and replaced with 18 buildings instead, many of which are double in height.

Microsoft did not disclose how much total they are spending on the expansion.

Big Tech companies are one-upping each other on the most generous parental- leave policies, the best projects to run - and the best locations and spaces to work. 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. The campus will be divided into "team neighborhoods", which I imagine turns every single day into a corporate retreat team-building exercise. (Construction is expected to begin next fall.) Microsoft has some 47,000 employees in the region now.

In return for its growing presence in the city, Microsoft committed in 2005 to give $150 million to the city of Redmond and Sound Transit for infrastructure improvements. The bridge will also tie into a forthcoming Link Light Rail station set to arrive in 2023.

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