The Google Mountain View Campus, designed by Bjarke Ingels Architects + Heatherwick Studio, is a combination of two projects – Charleston East and Bay View – which are conceived as heterogeneous spaces with the potential to address the firm’s constantly evolving needs and integrate future work models. Hence the roof is detached from the slabs and walls, giving rise to a vast, hangar-like free space. The program is distributed in two levels linked by courtyards: the ground floor contains public spaces and auxiliary uses, while the upper floors house the actual work areas and recreational facilities.
Google Campus Technical Information
- Architects1-5: BIG Bjarke Ingels + Group Heatherwick Studio
- Location: Mountain View, California, USA
- Client: Google
- Topics: Offices, Modular Architecture
- Area: 102,193 m2
- Project Year: 2017 – 2022
- Photographs: © Christopher McAnneny
With an emphasis on human-centered design for optimizing technology, Bay View will feature open-plan offices consolidated on a single raised open floor plate, with all the associated support spaces tucked under this level and accessed through a series of place-making courtyards.
– BIG Architects
Google Campus Photographs
Text by the Architects
The Bay View site, as part of the Google Mountain View campus, houses a state-of-the-art office space designed to seat 4350 Googlers in 2 large single volume spaces that rethink the future of workplace design. With an emphasis on human-centered design for optimizing technology, Bay View will feature open-plan offices consolidated on a single raised open floor plate, with all the associated support spaces tucked under this level and accessed through a series of place-making courtyards.
The design of Bay View features a large canopy that regulates light, climate, air quality, and sound and encloses flexible building segments that can accommodate the change in office use over time. Both inside and outside of the enclosure, we plan to restore the natural habitat of the site. A generous central plaza connects to the two offices’ “squomes” (square domes) and provides a shaded, sheltered, secure outdoor space for large-scale events, meetings, and dining. This external heart of the complex also provides access to a third structure which houses 1000 and 500 seat live production spaces and smaller break-out event spaces.
The proposal for Charleston East integrates and respects nature, fosters a sense of community, and reflects Google’s culture of innovation through bold architecture and infrastructure. Our goal is to create a highly flexible workplace that can not only adapt to Google’s evolving business needs but can also become a destination for the local community.
The Charleston East site is uniquely positioned within North Bayshore, located at the junction between the key Gateway Boulevards and within the general character area but bordering the ‘Core Area.’ Our proposal reflects the value of this location and responds to the surrounding neighborhood. Nestled between an urban area to the south and the natural frontier to the north, the site embeds itself by extending those existing characters onto the site. Set in a larger landscape, the design creates new public and private spaces by adding man-made topographies that define paths and connect the site to what sits around it.
Mountain View has a clear vision of business and nature coexisting, which will help sensitive species thrive in Shoreline Regional Park. Google shares this vision, and the Charleston East ecosystem enhancements are designed to benefit from informed, committed stewardship, with natural surroundings that invigorate the workplace and the neighborhood.
The ground level consists of a collection of pavilions with a pedestrian path that weaves through the building. The pedestrian path through the building will typically be open to the public from dawn to dusk. Cales and shops dot the artery to create a bustling social and retail destination open to Googlers and the wider public. Smaller meandering paths between the pavilions provide quieter and more intimate spaces for collaboration and private conversation.
Set above these pavilions is a stepped office floor where Googlers can connect spatially and visually. However, office furniture and partitions on the upper level are highly flexible and reconfigurable. As a two-tier building, desk spaces are located above the noise and activity of meeting rooms and cafes, minimizing distraction and interruption for the workers above.
To provide environmental protection and daylight control across such ample space, a lightweight canopy is held up by a grid of delicate-looking tent poles. Natural light will seep through the clerestories between each catenary panel to illuminate the interiors. Vertical curtain walls on all four elevations will enable daylight to flood the workspace and provide employees with views outdoors.
Google Campus Plans
Bay View and Charleston East Video
Google Mountain View Campus Image Gallery
About Bjarke Ingels
Bjarke Ingels (born in Copenhagen in 1974) studied architecture at the Royal Academy in Copenhagen and the School of Architecture of Barcelona, obtaining his degree as an architect in 1998. He is the founder of the BIG architecture studio – (Bjarke Ingels Group), founded in 2005, after co-founding PLOT Architects in 2001 with his former partner Julien de Smedt, whom he met while working at the prestigious OMA studio in Rotterdam.
Bjarke has designed and completed award-winning buildings worldwide, and currently, his studio is based with venues in Copenhagen and New York. His projects include The Mountain, a residential complex in Copenhagen, and the innovative Danish Maritime Museum in Elsinore.
Works from BIG Architects
About Thomas Heatherwick
Thomas Heatherwick established his studio in 1994 and is recognized for its work in architecture, urban infrastructure, sculpture, design, and strategic thinking. Today a team of 180, including architects, designers, and makers, works from a combined studio and workshop in London.
At the heart of the studio’s work is a profound commitment to finding innovative design solutions, dedication to artistic thinking, and the latent potential of materials and craftsmanship. This is achieved through a working methodology of collaborative rational inquiry, undertaken in a spirit of curiosity and experimentation.
In the twenty years of its existence, Heatherwick Studio has worked in many countries, with a wide range of commissioners, and in various regulatory environments. Through this experience, the studio has acquired a high level of expertise in designing and realizing unusual projects, focusing on a large scale.
Works from Heatherwick Studio
- Partner-in-charge: Bjarke Ingels, Thomas Christoffersen, Daniel Sundlin, Leon Rost
- Project Leaders: Blake Smith, Ryan Harvey, David Iseri, Florencia Kratsman
- Project Managers: Linus Saavedra, Ziad Shehab
- Team: Agla Egilsdottir, Alan Tansey, Alessandra Peracin, Ali Chen, Andriani Atmadja, Ania Podlaszewska, Armen Menendian, Beat Schenk, Benjamin Caldwell, Bernard Peng, Brian Zhang, Camilo Aspeny, Cheyne Owens, Cristina Medina Gonzalez, Danielle Kemble, Deborah Campbell, Diandian Li, Douglass Alligood, Dylan Hames, Erik Berg Kreider, Eva Maria Mikkelsen, Guarav Sardana, Guillaume Evain, Hacken Li, Helen Chen, Isabella Marcotulli, Isela Liu, Jan Leenknegt, Jason Wu, Jennifer Wood, Ji-young Yoon, Jia Chengzhen, Jian Yong Khoo, Joshua Plourde, Kalina Pilat, Kurt Nieminen, Manon Otto, Marcus Kujala, Michelle Stromsta, Nandi Lu, Nicole Passarella, Olga Khuraskina, Oliver Colman, Patrick Hyland, Peter Kwak, Ramona Montecillo, Rita Sio, Sebastian Grogaard, Seo Young Shin, Siva Sepehry Nejad, Terrence Chew, Thomas McMurtrie, Timothy Cheng, Tingting Lyu, Tracy Sodder, Valentino Vitacca, Vincenzo Polsinelli, Walid Bhatt, Yesul Cho, Yina Moore, Zhonghan Huang
- Collaborators: Sares Regis (Development Group), Adamson (Executive Architect), STUDIOS (Interior Architect), Populous (Events Consultant), Thornton Tomasetti (Structural Engineers), Integral Group (Mechanical Engineer), Olin (Landscape Architect), ARUP (Civil Engineer & Acoustic Consultant & Facade Engineers), BKF (Civil Engineer), Sherwood (Water Engineer), Holmes (Fire & Life Safety), Kleinfelder (Geotechnical Engineer), Loisos + Ubbelohde (Daylighting Consultant), FMS (Lighting Consultant), C.S. Caulkins Co (Access & Maintenance), Telecom (Telecommunications), Whiting-Turner (Pre-Construction GC)