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Apple: The Latest Architecture and News

The Motherships Are Landing: What Google’s New Headquarters Reveal About Apple 2

When Apple revealed the plans for their new campus in Cupertino, the responses to the “spaceship” were….varied, to say the least:

Spectacular would be an understatement” ; “So disappointing…” ; a “…panopti-lawn…” ; and – my personal favorite – “Sphincter?” [1]

The announcement instigated a flurry of analyses and criticisms over the meaning of the design for the world – the Zen-like significance of the circle, the role of architecture in this technologically-driven age, the legacy and hubris of Jobs – but produced very little discussion over its meaning for the company itself.

Meanwhile, months before news of the “spaceship” landed, another internet giant was searching the California landscape for its own space to call home. Still very much under-wraps, the new Googleplex will be the first time Google builds a workplace completely from scratch. [2]

These projects will be the Magnum Opuses, the ultimate physical representations, of the two most influential Tech companies in the world, and the two share striking similarities. So let’s clash the plans of these two titans and take another look at Apple 2 – but this time in the light of Google – and see what they can tell us about these companies’ futures.

Moleskine App for iPad: The Hand of the Architect

iPad Screenshot via iTunes
iPad Screenshot via iTunes

Our favorite sketchbook has gone digital! Moleskine presents The Hand of the Architect – an iPad app featuring 378 sketches and drawings from 110 internationally renowned architects, such as Assadi, Botta, Fuksas, Graves, Gregotti, Hadid, Foster and Piano, “showing that every project always begins by hand”. All the works were collected by FAI (Italian National Trust) with the aim of raising funds to restore Piero Portaluppi’s Villa Necchi, known as a 1930s masterpiece of Italian rationalism in Milan. Sketches and drawings are accompanied by essays, captions and the biographies of the architects. You can purchase the app for $18.99 here on iTunes.

In case you missed it, check out Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater iPad App and Zaha Hadid Architects iPhone & iPad App, previously featured here on ArchDaily.

Updated Plans released for Foster + Partner’s new Apple Campus in Cupertino

© Foster + Partners, ARUP, Kier + Wright, Apple
© Foster + Partners, ARUP, Kier + Wright, Apple

Apple has released updated plans revealing an ambitions solar installation for their proposed campus in Cupertino. Announced back in June, the campus will include an office, research and development building, research facilities, corporate auditorium, fitness center, a central plant and associated parking. Foster + Partners will collaborate with ARUP North America and local civil engineering firm Kier & Wright for the completion of the project.

Continue reading for more details.

© Foster + Partners, ARUP, Kier + Wright, Apple © Foster + Partners, ARUP, Kier + Wright, Apple © Foster + Partners, ARUP, Kier + Wright, Apple © Foster + Partners, ARUP, Kier + Wright, Apple + 28

Update: New Apple Retail Store at the Third Street Promenade

As we reported on Wednesday, rumors were circulating about a new Apple retail store at the Third Street Promenade in Santa Monica. Wednesday evening the proposal, a transparent glass ceiling commercial building by an unnamed retailer, went before the Santa Monica Planning Commission. Peggy Clifford of the Santa Monica Dispatch reported that the ‘Apple Glass House’ was approved without even a second thought.

The Apple Campus in Cupertino

Apple Campus in Cupertino
Apple Campus in Cupertino

Last week the Internet and architecture blogs went crazy after Steve Jobs presented the new Apple Campus to the city of Cupertino, California.

Rumors about Foster + Partners (an office with a high expertise on work environments) working with Apple on this new campus appeared on December last year on a Spanish newspaper, but there was never an official confirmation (or denial). But given that the actual project fits with the information we received from an anonymous tipster last December, it seems it could be right:

“I recently got a tour of Norman Foster’s office in London and saw some images of the Apple Campus design. I believe the main building will be a large donut shaped building with all the offices and labs surrounding a large garden. It was a very pure form which connects to some of the recent Apple stores, but I was surprised that it didn’t really scream Apple to me. Of course it could have been a very preliminary design that wasn’t fully resolved yet. Anyway, I just thought I would pass on some info.”

During Steve Job’s presentation to the city of Cupertino we could see this round building, and Jobs outlined several facts on how this new campus for 12,000 people will improve the 98-acre site, such as taking parking underground to reduce the footprint, increasing landscaping from 20% to 80%, and planting more trees (3,700 now, 6,000 in the future). It even includes its own natural gas based energy generation plant (as seen on the drawings) with the electrical grid as backup.

Apple Campus in Cupertino
Apple Campus in Cupertino

As for the 4-story round building, Jobs said:

“It’s a pretty amazing building. It’s a little like a spaceship landed. It’s got this gorgeous courtyard in the middle… It’s a circle. It’s curved all the way around. If you build things, this is not the cheapest way to build something. There is not a straight piece of glass in this building. It’s all curved. We’ve used our experience making retail buildings all over the world now, and we know how to make the biggest pieces of glass in the world for architectural use. And, we want to make the glass specifically for this building here. We can make it curve all the way around the building… It’s pretty cool.”

We reached Steve Jobs over the past weekend to get more details about the project and he said that he wasn´t interested in presenting the project on ArchDaily at this time, possibly because the project still needs to be approved by the city. We hope to bring you more details later on, so you can have an informed opinion.

More images from the presentation after the break.