A milestone for Microsoft today as demolition officially begins for a multibillion dollar expansion project at its global headquarters in Redmond.
Some workers who won the bid in a company donation auction also took part in the demolition process of the iconic building 1.
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In all, 12 older buildings will come down to make way for 18 new structures that will be organized into four distinct villages.
The new buildings will be designed to have a more “open, modern, and sustainable” feel.
“We hit refresh for the company and we need to hit the refresher for our campus and workplace,” said Michael Ford, general manager for global real estate and facilities. “We have to build an environment where employees can collaborate and be innovative and creative.”
This campus overhaul is the first in over a decade and is aimed at also attracting some 8,000 additional workers.
The project's completion date is set for 2024, around the same time the Redmond light rail station is set to open for service.
A new pedestrian bridge over 520 is in the works to accommodate workers who bike and walk.
One engineer, who commutes from Sultan, said this investment shows Microsoft's commitment to compete with rival tech giants like Amazon and Google.
“It helps attract talents,” said Charity Snellgrove. “That’s a good thing for the company and the area.”
About 5,000 workers have already been relocated to other Microsoft offices around the sound.
The first new buildings are set to open for business in about four years.
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