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New Apple 'spaceship' HQ may be pushed back to 2016 [U]

updated 08:38 pm EST, Wed November 21, 2012

Ambitious construction plan meets red tape, regulations

[Update: the revised plans are now officially filed, and Apple's comments have been added] A revised timetable for the construction of Apple's futuristic "spaceship" new main campus, originally planned to break ground this year and be completed in 2015, reveals that the company may not be able to begin the project until 2014, but still hopes to complete the new company headquarters by 2016, only slightly delayed from its original goal.

The initial holdup is an environmental impact report, reports AppleInsider, that may not be completed until next summer even though it has been expedited already. Cupertino city manager David Brandt expressed optimism that, barring any unforeseen council issues or strong opposition from local residents, the company could break ground on the construction sometime in 2013, but "only if everything goes smoothly."

Apple has made very few changes to the plans since submitted them originally, but the new filing makes a small change in the way the project would be constructed so that earth from the existing 176-acre site would not have to be removed. While the change may help speed up the environmental impact report, by filing it so late in the year, an approval from the city council in early 2013 is unrealistic.

The only other change that has been made to the plans was to relocate an underground auditorium, one of a number of underground areas that supplement the above-ground design. The original drawings and plans were submitted personally by former CEO Steve Jobs to the Cupertino council in June of 2011.

Apple commented to AllThingsD on the delay, with Apple spokesperson Amy Bessette saying that "Apple Campus 2 will be a new home for our company and an important part of the lives of more than 12,000 Apple employees. With that in mind, we have approached this project with the same care and attention to detail we pay when designing any Apple product."

Incoming Cupertino Mayor Orrin Mahoney noted that Apple had "recently changed internal management of the project," a likely reference to the executive shuffle that saw current Apple executives taking on new responsibilities while ousting both former iOS chief Scott Forstall and retail head John Browett. Who is directly in charge of the construction effort is not currently known.

The revised plans will be posted on the city's community development website after Thanksgiving, according to the director of the department, Aarti Shrivastava. Making the plans public, he said, will require that the city upgrade their web servers to handle the expected spike in visitors to the site.

by MacNN Staff




  1. lkrupp

    Junior Member

    Joined: 05-13-01

    Har. By 2016 Apple will be out of business and in the dust bin of history.

    Sincerely yours,

    iHaters Amalgamated, Local 21

  1. Inkling

    Senior User

    Joined: 07-25-06

    This delay illustrates one of the problems with growing a business in California, a business-hostile environment that subjects everything to a host of reviews that make blocking construction easy for a small but determined group. Look at how long it took for Jobs to demolish that home he owned. He basically had to let it deteriorate to the point where restoring it became too costly.

    Apple as a company is more fortunate, since their products are:


  2. Cool for the trendy set

  3. Actually made elsewhere

    Pity someone who actually wants to make something in California.

    The real downside to locating in California are the state's huge deficits despite (or because of) high taxes and the enormous underfunded obligations for the retirement of state and local government employees. The state is in the throes of a death spiral. Raising expenses mean rising taxes which drives away those who pay the taxes resulting in less revenue, fewer jobs, and more welfare spending. Already California, with one-eighth the nation's population, has one third the nation's welfare spending. And don't forget that the state's public schools rank 47th in the nation. Schools that poor aren't going to create a capable twenty-first century workforce.

    The only way to escape those pension and other obligations will be through a first-ever state bankruptcy. And the only way to pay them will be high taxes, direct or indirect, on California's few remaining lucrative businesses. At the top of the target list will be poor Apple, still determined--despite all good sense--to be able to stamp "Designed in California" on its products.

    Those who see California as the future of our nation are predicting a most dismal future.

  1. Flying Meat

    Dedicated MacNNer

    Joined: 01-25-07

    As businesses rarely spend money to determine what they will crush, beyond their competition, it is incumbent upon the individuals that live in/care about their environment to assure it is done well.

    Don't want to burst yer bubble there with your California doom-saying, but we're not doing as badly as your post suggests. Perhaps other states just don't recognize their depths of welfare use?

    And I dread the thought that I might ever have to live anywhere else.

  1. Charles Martin

    MacNN Editor

    Joined: 08-04-01


    1. And yet, SOMEHOW, Apple is the most valuable publicly-traded company in the world, and is also home to many, many other insanely valuable companies. In California. Hmmm, this would seem to put the lie to your statements. Yes, Apple outsources their manufacturing -- as do most companies. Even startups. Check out all the projects on Kickstarter that order prototypes and then (when funded) do the manufacturing in (insert developing country here). Doing manufacturing in China and other places is commonplace for all types of businesses.

    2. Somebody else will be more knowledgable than I on this point, but ISTR that California first amassed huge deficits when Enron bankrupted the state by blackmailing them on electricity. Funny how Arnie couldn't manage to bring the budget back under control.

    3. I challenge your stats on California's welfare spending. According to CNBC, CA spends $3BN a year. However, the total for national welfare spending is $111B (family and children support only, I'm not even counting housing assistance or other types of services). Elementary math would suggest that saying CA uses 1/3rd of the nation's welfare budget is absurd.

    It's also not true that California is 47th in the nation in education. That would be West Virginia:

    In addition to being misinformed about welfare spending and education, you are also mistaken about bankruptcy law. States cannot declare bankruptcy:

    I might suggest you avail yourself of some more diverse news sources (the Internet has many) and get your facts straight before presenting a case based on false premises. I'm not saying that California doesn't have an issue with over-regulation (in some areas) or that they don't have some need for tax reform (though again you are wrong about them having the highest tax rates:, -- but using bad info to try and make your point just undermines your credibility.

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