Apple Park toured, execs reminisce about Steve Jobs's devotion to and vision of the projec...

Posted:
in General Discussion edited May 2017
During a tour given to a journalist in May, Apple's Design head Jony Ive and the architects responsible for the project spoke about the philosophy of Apple Park's design, Steve Jobs' influence on the project down to minute details, and the massive engineering effort needed to complete the project.




In May, Steven Levy writing for Wired took a tour of the newly christened Apple Park, and spent some time with lead architect Norman Foster, Ive, Apple's head of Environment, Policy, and Social Initiatives Lisa Jackson, and CEO Tim Cook to discuss the massive project.

Ive on Apple Park's design and attention to detail

"It's frustrating to talk about this building in terms of absurd, large numbers. It makes for an impressive statistic, but you don't live in an impressive statistic," Ive said. "While it is a technical marvel to make glass at this scale, that's not the achievement. The achievement is to make a building where so many people can connect and collaborate and walk and talk."

During the tour, Ive spoke with his typical style on minute topics, even the concrete, and hand-rails in the parking garage stairwells.

"It's not that we're using expensive concrete," said Ive, strolling through the underground parking structure. "It's the care and development of a design idea and then being resolute--no, we're not going to just do the easy, least-path-of-resistance sort of standardized form work."

Environmental considerations




As part of the interview, Wired discussed choices made during construction. Jobs had very precise requirements for the lumber's harvesting regarding sap and sugar content. Ultimately, the architects worked with Apple to generate a substrate that was more environmentally friendly than Jobs' original vision.

Regardless of lumber choice, Jobs also sought an environmentally friendly building, that grounded the employees in a California-centric ambiance.

"Part of being connected to the outside is knowing what temperature it is. We don't want you to feel like you're in a casino. We want you to know what time of day it is, what temperature it is outside. Is the wind really blowing," said Jackson. "That was Steve's original intention, to sort of blur that line between the inside and outside. It sort of wakes up your senses.

Apple Park "on a diet"




The complex construction has taken years longer than expected, but has stayed true to original design estimates. When the budget for the project appeared ready to explode in 2012, the project got put "on a diet," but the architects believe that the near-finished project is what Jobs was looking for, when he first spoke to the Cupertino Council.

"I would say that the big picture has not changed at all," Norman Foster of architectural firm Foster + Partners said. "If Steve could reappear, it would be as he conceived it when he last saw it as drawings. He'd find some of the details that were not addressed in his lifetime, but I believe he'd approve them."

"The goal was to create an experience and an environment that felt like a reflection of who we are as a company," added Ive. "This is our home, and everything we make in the future is going to start here."

Apple CEO Tim Cook believes that the focus on the campus' details and the philosophy behind the "pods" concept for groups will help hone Apple's message and products.

"Could we have cut a corner here or there?" Apple CEO Tim Cook asked during Wired's tour. "It wouldn't have been Apple. And it wouldn't have sent the message to everybody working here every day that detail matters, that care matters."



On Feb. 22, Apple officially christened the "spaceship" campus under construction. The entire facility is now called "Apple Park," with the 20-foot tall and 165 foot in diameter glass auditorium honoring one of the founders of the company and named the "Steve Jobs Theater."

An environmentally-friendly design was paramount to Jobs's vision. Apple's related Phase 2 project adds additional workspace adjacent to the main headquarters, and includes a small data center powered by an on-site solar farm, fuel cells, and other sources of renewable energy.

A new micro-grid installed on the campus is reportedly capable of delivering 17 megawatts of power from solar alone, and handling about 75 percent of the facility's power requirements. The solar installation is supplemented by Bloom Energy-provided fuel cells, similar to those installed at the North Carolina data center.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 34
    Cook is guarding that column with his life.
    StrangeDaysbdkennedy1002coolfactorbestkeptsecretwillcropoint
  • Reply 2 of 34
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,641member
    Gosh I want to see more! This is like a sneak peek. 
    coolfactorSolijbdragonrepressthispatchythepirate
  • Reply 3 of 34
    calicali Posts: 3,495member
    Fu**ing breathtaking.
    pscooter63coolfactorSolijbdragonrepressthispatchythepirate
  • Reply 4 of 34
    flaneurflaneur Posts: 4,471member
    Great article by Levy so far. Here's a sample sentence:

    " It turns out that when you turn a skyscraper on its side, all of its bullying power dissipates into a humble serenity."
    edredpscooter63StrangeDayscoolfactorrepressthispatchythepirate
  • Reply 5 of 34
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 3,487member
    This was a great story until the end where Wired felt it necessary to give column inches to all the naysayers and snobs pouring cold water all over this design.
    repressthispatchythepirate
  • Reply 6 of 34
    asdasdasdasd Posts: 5,138member
    I liked it all except the Pod lighting. I suppose they can bring in their own lamps.
  • Reply 7 of 34
    asdasdasdasd Posts: 5,138member
    Also who gets a window pod. That will be thing real differentiator of status. 
    repressthis
  • Reply 8 of 34
    Does the article explain how the building will deliver on the promise of experiencing the weather while indoors?  At home I know when there is a heavy wind because some of the windows rattle.  That's probably not the Apple solution.
    king editor the gratejbdragonrepressthis
  • Reply 9 of 34
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 6,530member
    This was a great story until the end where Wired felt it necessary to give column inches to all the naysayers and snobs pouring cold water all over this design.
    Yeah, the asshat haters over at MacRumors are pissing all over this. They claim any company building a monument to itself is in trouble and on its way out. And of course there’s the obligatory “Instead of this they should be releasing new Macs” asshattery. How do you go through life being negative on everything?
    mike1StrangeDaysSolijbdragonpscooter63watto_cobrarepressthis
  • Reply 10 of 34
    holyoneholyone Posts: 377member
    It's Wired constantly talking shit about Apple ? I mean I stopped reading that thing when they suggested Tesla was now the new Apple, am I missing something ? A first look really ?
    StrangeDays
  • Reply 11 of 34
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 4,468member
    This was a great story until the end where Wired felt it necessary to give column inches to all the naysayers and snobs pouring cold water all over this design.
    There's two sides to every story; I'd rather hear both. 

    Still, this is a stunning piece of architecture. 
    pscooter63repressthis
  • Reply 12 of 34
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 4,468member

    Does the article explain how the building will deliver on the promise of experiencing the weather while indoors?  At home I know when there is a heavy wind because some of the windows rattle.  That's probably not the Apple solution.
    Looking at the amount of glass, you're probably going to feel like you're sitting outside. 
    repressthis
  • Reply 13 of 34
    flaneurflaneur Posts: 4,471member
    holyone said:
    It's Wired constantly talking shit about Apple ? I mean I stopped reading that thing when they suggested Tesla was now the new Apple, am I missing something ? A first look really ?
    Yeah, it's a great article, with lotsa details. 
  • Reply 14 of 34
    flaneur said:
    Great article by Levy so far. Here's a sample sentence:

    " It turns out that when you turn a skyscraper on its side, all of its bullying power dissipates into a humble serenity."


    But right before that he says "From planes descending to SFO, and even from drones that buzz the building from a hundred feet above it, the Ring looks like an ominous icon, an expression of corporate power, and a what-the-fuck oddity among the malls, highways, and more mundane office parks of suburban Silicon Valley."

    Really?  You can't express yourself without dropping the f-bomb?  Perhaps that's in the WIRED style guild: "use shocking--even inappropriate--language frequently."

    SpamSandwich
  • Reply 15 of 34
    lkrupp said:
    This was a great story until the end where Wired felt it necessary to give column inches to all the naysayers and snobs pouring cold water all over this design.
    Yeah, the asshat haters over at MacRumors are pissing all over this. They claim any company building a monument to itself is in trouble and on its way out. And of course there’s the obligatory “Instead of this they should be releasing new Macs” asshattery. How do you go through life being negative on everything?

    Reminds me of the story that showed up in my Apple News app feed the other day.  The headline was (something like) "Apple may hit $1 trillion, but it won't be on top forever."  That's news?  That at some point in the future some other company will be the most valuable in the world?  Shocking.  I think the article also said that Amazon might beat Apple to the trillion dollar milestone.  What. ever.
    Solipscooter63
  • Reply 16 of 34
    radarthekatradarthekat Posts: 2,733moderator
    "Could we have cut a corner here or there?" Apple CEO Tim Cook asked...

    Um...
    king editor the grate
  • Reply 17 of 34
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 6,054member
    Rayz2016 said:
    This was a great story until the end where Wired felt it necessary to give column inches to all the naysayers and snobs pouring cold water all over this design.
    There's two sides to every story; I'd rather hear both. 
    I have no desire to hear the "story" put forth by haters -- that everything Apple does sucks, is doomed to fail, wouldn't happen under Jobs, etc. It's all just childish fits from those who can't stand that Apple has reached the pinnacle that it has, alone, and in spite of all of their collective hater-wisdom.
    Soli
  • Reply 18 of 34
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 6,054member

    flaneur said:
    Great article by Levy so far. Here's a sample sentence:

    " It turns out that when you turn a skyscraper on its side, all of its bullying power dissipates into a humble serenity."


    But right before that he says "From planes descending to SFO, and even from drones that buzz the building from a hundred feet above it, the Ring looks like an ominous icon, an expression of corporate power, and a what-the-fuck oddity among the malls, highways, and more mundane office parks of suburban Silicon Valley."

    Really?  You can't express yourself without dropping the f-bomb?  Perhaps that's in the WIRED style guild: "use shocking--even inappropriate--language frequently."

    If as a grown adult you can't bear the sight of adult vocabulary, you have issues. Adults can use big words when they have appropriate contextual meaning. 
    Soli
  • Reply 19 of 34
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 30,260member
    Norman Foster is being a bit presumptuous here: 

    "...He'd find some of the details that were not addressed in his lifetime, but I believe he'd approve them."

    As we all know Steve would let fly a stream of expletives and reject whatever details were not addressed... and possibly threaten to fire and/or sue the architectural firm.
  • Reply 20 of 34
    holyoneholyone Posts: 377member
    It's Wired constantly talking shit about Apple ? I mean I stopped reading that thing when they suggested Tesla was now the new Apple, am I missing something ? A first look really ?
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