updated 01:49 am EST, Fri February 7, 2014
Store to become 'even more iconic' than New York Fifth Avenue showcase
Following a hearing on Thursday, San Francisco's Planning Commission has issued a preliminary approval "with conditions" of the final plans for Apple's new Union Square Apple Store. The design, which has undergone a number of revisions and tweaks to accommodate city concerns, now embraces a historic folk art fountain it once planned to shunt aside, and creates a seating area and plaza along its back wall, as well as a front facade featuring giant glass doors.
revised storefront features two-story sliding doors
The final plan, which was revised just days ago, made additional changes to the second floor of the building, which features a cantilevered design that includes two-story sliding panels in the front. The iPhone maker has agreed to provide free Wi-Fi in the plaza area behind the store, and has additionally refined a waterfall wall that joins the store to the hotel that originally owned what is now the plaza area and fountain.
When completed, the story will occupy 23,470 square feet of space and use a column-less design in an L-shaped arrangement (where the original building had used a triangular shape and traditional supporting columns). The change in geometry allowed the company to cut the height of the original proposal from four floors to two, and increase the plaza area by nearly 25 percent. Apple says the middle bay windows on both the first and second floor will slide open during operating hours.
The design of the store (seen above in a rendering) will be similar to designs of other forthcoming Apple Stores, but due to the various changes made mostly at the behest of the city, will still differ substantially. The store will make use of the now-iconic large glass panels, blased steel sides and gray masonry for its interior as seen in some other outlets.