updated 01:35 pm EDT, Tue September 28, 2010
Layout relies on utilitarian principles
Steve Jobs' replacement home in Woodside, California should differ significantly from those of some other CEOs, newly exposed plans suggest. Originally submitted to town council to justify demolishing the historic Jackling House versus restoring it, the plans show a new single-family home roughly a third the size of its predecessor, and worth about $8.45 million. The layout is in fact relatively utilitarian for an executive, with five bedrooms, a three-car garage and a vegetable garden. More decorative elements include decks, lighted stone walkways and indigenous plants scattered over the estate's 6 acres.
Jackling House, by comparison, has a total of 30 rooms, including 14 bedrooms and 13.5 bathrooms. Not far from the building is the home of Oracle CEO Larry Ellison, which cost $70 million and is modeled after feudal Japanese architecture. Jobs is likely to have offered specific guidance when coming up with Jackling's replacement, says Christopher Travis, a managing partner of Austin, Texas-based Sentient Architecture.
"This kind of thing only happens when the client gives the architect specific instructions to be sparse and utilitarian," he explains. "The natural tendency is to go 'McMansion.' I would say this plan is a direct result of a specific requirement by Jobs to make it plain and simple...It's almost Zen, with a vaguely oriental simplicity to it.
"It is functional, not really designed for entertaining, but a home/work environment," Travis adds. "This guy likes his work." The firm behind the new home is noted to be Bohlin Cywinski Jackson, famous for designing some of the more striking Apple Stores, including the Fifth Avenue location in New York City.
Regardless of whether or not the final home resembles conceptual plans, it may be some time before Jobs and his family can move in. Dismantling Jackling House and then raising the new building is expected to take about 22 months, barring any expected delays. Another set of plans should reach town council before machinery is put in motion.