Microsoft unveils plan for Redmond HQ expansion

Artist rendering shows the planned redevelopment including the removal of 12 buildings and the construction of 18 new ones along with open spaces and sports fields

The project is slated to take around five to seven years to complete and, according to Bloomberg, will cost multiple billions.

Microsoft's modern campus overhaul isn't as futuristic as the Apple Park, but the company says it's a major step forward for its culture, substantially expanding its headquarters with modern workplaces and creating 2,500 construction and development jobs in the area.

Microsoft also says that it wants its new campus to be more open rather than formal, and it will divide it into a set of "team neighborhoods". However, the net result will be an increase from 125 buildings today to 131 buildings once the project is complete. There would also be a community space for 8,000 to 12,000 people in an open-air plaza and outdoor areas for running and walking, green spaces and walking trails.

The changes will replace the original X-shaped buildings where co-founder and former CEO Bill Gates moved the company in 1986, shortly before Microsoft went public.

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That transportation emphasis is perhaps the biggest difference from the expansion plan a decade ago. Along with the new buildings and public spaces, Microsoft's new campus is created to have running and walking trails and an open-air plaza capable of holding 8,000 to 12,000 people.

Microsoft stated that the redevelopment of the campus would create over 2,500 new construction and development jobs. "We are not only creating a world-class work environment to help retain and attract the best and brightest global talent, but also building a campus that our neighbors can enjoy, and that we can build in a fiscally smart way with low environmental impact".

Our new buildings will focus on inclusive design and accessible technology to empower all of our employees. Overall, the campus will be designed more for pedestrians and usage of the local light rail, which will reach the campus by then based on the region's current plan. Having been the bane of many Microsoft employee for their confusing corridors, it's unlikely they'll be missed.

As Microsoft continues to create the tools and services that are shaping the future of work, we can't think of a better time to modernize our campus into a model of ingenuity and innovation.

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