Will Google’s new campus outdo Apple’s?

Newsletter, West
Monday, August 8, 2011

After Apple unveiled its plans for a spaceship-like new headquarters by (we think) Norman Foster at a recent Cupertino city council meeting, it appears that their chief rival Google is now looking, as usual, to outdo the Apple-ites. We hear from our sources that edgy—and super green—German architect Christoph Ingenhoven is set to design the Google HQ addition, supplementing the massive GooglePlex in Mountainview (which already contains more than 65 buildings).

According to the San Jose Mercury News the company has already leased an additional 9.4 acres from Mountain View at a price of $30 million and is planning to build the new office space there, accommodating new recruits, among others. Perhaps the offices will do a better job of engaging their Silicon Valley environs? Stay tuned. Or just keep Googling it. And check out some Ingenhoven designs below:

European Investment Bank

European Investment Bank

Main Station, Stuttgart

Main Station, Stuttgart

Main Station, Stuttgart

Main Station, Stuttgart

Hamburg Oval

Hamburg Oval

3 Responses to “Will Google’s new campus outdo Apple’s?”

  1. mike eliason says:

    ingenhoven does the green thing much better than foster, – especially when they team up with transsolar. it’ll be interesting to see how much ingenhoven architekten bests the apple HQ.

    also, i’ve never associated christoph w/ switzerland… born in duesseldorf, studied at RWTH, office is in duesseldorf…

  2. Keith says:

    Foster is one of the greatest architects on the planet, I’ve never even heard of ingenhoven – none of his projects are taught in architecture school. enough said.

  3. ciaran lavery says:

    I wrote a response to the proposed new apple headquartes after it was presented on Studio 360 in the autumn of 2011.
    Being a busy architectural drone at present I can only make a list that might become the outline for a proper response:

    It is positive to see the environmental consideration being put into the project and the commitment to sustainable and appropriate technologies. Foster has a proven track record in this.

    This approach does not guarantee a truly biophilic connection between people and the environment. Nor does it profer to be a truly progressive healthy work environment, a bit more later….this would be the major thrust of any meaningful criticism in my opinion, worker experience.

    As for the Zen circle business, interesting but differentiated. Firstly if you really look at these circles they are all ‘incomplete’ and imperfect which shoud be noticed as part of the Zen mindfulness. Secondly where I roll
    we do not build metaphors.

    Most importantly the project fails to display formal literacy in that it is a closed, point controlled form, surely beautiful from a balloon or satellite at night. Being a closed form this most often results built territory that does not exchange with the environment and/or itself. I pointed out the work of Dr. Aldo VanEyck one of last centuries true masters of the circle and his work at the European Space Centre ESTEC in Noordwijk, as being an example of a progressive, pluralistic work environment using the circle as generative form.

    Another point that may be added to the Zen circle, Cenotaph discussion is the notion of Panopticon which implies centrist control, an attribute that would not be
    wasted on Mr. Jobs, (despite his obvious and many wonderful other traits).

    Not being a fan of criticism without seeing the work, all this is presented with some hesitation mixed in with the strength of conviction. Having glimpsed the floorplans of the proposed donut I was also take aback my instant comparison with the image of the infamous plan view of the layout of slaves in the slave ships….a packed design as we would say in the industry! The lack of horizontal, open, free address, clustering that one would expect from a progressive 21st century work environment was somewhat shocking, something that Foster has worked against as seen in his Hong Kong Shanghai bank and other working environments.

    make of this what you will.

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