After Facebook assumed the former Sun Microsystems complex in Palo Alto in 2011, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg set out to find an architect capable of handling a grand design for its main main headquarters building. Zuckerberg chose world famous architect Frank Gehry for the job (amid major concessions to the city of Palo Alto).
If he was looking for impact, Zuckerberg could have made no better choice. Gehry’s past designs have become renowned tourist attractions, like the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain. They are considered some of the most important works of contemporary architecture on the planet.
Photos of the Gehry model that will become Facebook’s new HQ have been floating around for a couple of years. But with the building slated for completion next year, Facebook provided these new, exclusive images to Business Insider of what the world can expect from Gehry’s latest design:
At more than 435,000 square feet, spread across 22 acres, the new building dips and rises from 45 to 73 feet. It is built above a surface-level parking lot with a massive rooftop green space that resembles a park more than a small corporate outdoor garden.
Facebook’s new building is a powerful example of how people create a sense of space and ownership over their environment. Buildings have long been held up as shining example of human innovation. Considering Gehry’s new design is just one of many expansive new Silicon Valley projects, it feels as if the whole area is gently reshaping its self image.
The roof will support a handful of outdoor cafes, barbecues and work benches beneath full-size trees to complete the park-like effect. One building will be large enough to house 10,000 workers in a single room.
The building is scheduled to open in the spring of 2015.