Apple is officially headquartered at Apple Park, a meticulously designed and objectively extraordinary campus in Cupertino, California.
But while many Apple fans are probably aware of what it looks like and where it’s located, there are plenty of lesser-known details about the stunning campus. Continue reading to learn 7 interesting Apple Park facts that you might not have known.
It’s Among the World’s Priciest Buildings
Just looking at Apple Park, you can imagine that it’s a pretty expensive building to build. But a recent report actually puts a hard number to how much the overall campus is worth. Apple Park was assessed as worth $3.6 billion for property tax purposes. If you include computers, office gear and other equipment, that rises to $4.17 billion.
That places Apple Park among the world’s most expensive buildings (although that figure isn’t necessarily the same as its market value). That’s in spite of the fact that it’s not all that tall — it is, after all, only four stories. For comparison’s sake, the One World Trade Center in New York cost $3.9 billion to build.
Everything Is Custom
As you might expect from a company known for being detail-oriented, Apple Park’s construction is pretty remarkable. The campus itself was designed primarily by architect Norman Foster and Jony Ive. Together, the two designers oversaw all of the minute details about the stunning campus.
Everything in the campus is custom-made. The spaceship building’s windows, for example, are constructed from the world’s largest single sheets of curved glass. That attention-to-detail even extends to something as simple as a pizza box. Yes, Apple even designed and patented a pizza box because it thought it could do better.
It’s 100% Renewable
Apple Park also reflects the Cupertino tech giant’s overall values — including its commitment to sustainability and eco-conscious endeavors. In addition to the massive green spaces surrounding the campus, the entire headquarters is also powered by 100 percent renewable energy. In fact, it’s one of the most energy-efficient buildings in the world.
That’s sustainability is even shown off in the way that the spaceship building itself is cooled. Instead, the building basically “breathes.” Within the floors and ceilings of the building, there are embedded tubes of water that lock interior temperatures to a comfortable 68 to 77 degrees. As a result, the spaceship doesn’t require air conditioning for nine months out of the year.
Apple Park, by the Numbers
One of the best and easiest ways to understand Apple Park is to see some of the raw statistics about it and the campus it is situated on. Here are just a few interesting numbers related to the spaceship headquarters.
- Apple Park sits on a 175-acre campus — roughly the size of 40 football fields.
- The main donut-shaped “spaceship” building itself is roughly 2.8 million square feet.
- It’s designed to accommodate nearly 12,000 employees.
- You won’t find much asphalt and concrete here. The landscaping replaces 5 million square feet with grass and about 9,000 species of native and drought-resistant plants.
- The Steve Jobs Theater, which is a separate 165-foot cylinder, can seat 1,000.
- The cafeteria is four stories high and can hold up to 4,000 people at once.
Steve Jobs and Jony Ive Envisioned It
While Apple Park officially opened in April 2017, the idea for the spaceship campus came long before that. In fact, late Apple cofounder and CEO Steve Jobs was the one who envisioned the futuristic headquarters alongside Chief Design Officer Jony Ive (who also played a major role in designing it).
In fact, Jobs actually went to a Cupertino City Council meeting in June 2011 to pitch the idea for Apple Park — in what would become his last public appearance. “We’ve seen these office parks with lots of buildings and they get pretty boring pretty fast,” Jobs told the council during that meeting. “So we’d like to do something better than that.”
Fitness Is a Massive Deal
Apple also appears pretty committed to the health and wellness of its employees. In addition to plenty of walking trails and bike sharing opportunities, Apple Park is outfitted with a massive 100,000-square-foot fitness center, complete with a dental practice and a yoga room.
Speaking of the yoga room, it’s a two-story building that’s adorned in stone. That stone was, in fact, sourced from a very specific quarry in Kansas. The stone was then painstakingly distressed so that it looked just like the stone at Steve Jobs’ favorite hotel in Yosemite National Park.
California is earthquake country. So a meticulously designed campus is no good if it can’t stand out to the rigors of the state’s possible natural disasters. Luckily, Apple has specifically designed Apple Park to withstand the majority of earthquake situations.
Taking inspiration from Japanese architecture, the entire structure is designed to work like a giant gyroscope. Its foundation is essentially disconnected from the ground beneath it and instead sits on massive saucer structures. The rest of the spaceship can move and sway up to 4 and a half feet horizontally.