We?ve read and seen a multitude of things related to Apple Park. We already know that it is very close to being completed and very soon the Ma employees will start moving to the new and spectacular spaceship-shaped campus. We feel that we already know everything about this impressive work of architecture. Until it comes to WIRED and publishes a report so fascinating about details of the project and the work we perceive: no, there are still Many details to be discovered!
The story of a visit to Apple Park by the journalist Steven Levy and by the photographer Dan Winters, and guided by none other than Jonathan Ive who, at the top of his most elegant British accent, gives some personal details about the campus design and the challenges faced by the team in transposing the most amazing ideas of Steve Jobs and your class in reality. The piece as a whole deserves to be read, but here are some highlights and pictures that deserve attention.
The backbone of the story is something we already had in mind, but perhaps not in the proportion reported: Apple Park, in addition to the biggest ?product? in Apple's history, Jobs's last major project. The legendary co-founder of Ma spent a good part of his last two years of life between public hearings with the Cupertino city council, to get approval for the work, and endless meetings with Norman Foster and his huge team of architects who describe Jobs as a natural thinker of architecture, understanding minions and giving his opinion on extremely specific factors, such as the time when the wood that would serve as a partition for the offices should be cut to have the least sugar. and sap in its formation (if anyone is interested, the answer is January).
According to Norman Foster, the idea of ??making the main building in a ring shape came naturally, with Jobs's ideal of creating a space where all employees could work together and meet on walks around the building. One of the main ideas of the co-founder of Apple had to do with the workspace itself, which, according to him, would have the shape of "cocoons" modular spaces repeated and democratically distributed (in the sense that not even the CEO gains a larger space) that would enhance the confluence of ideas and people.
This concept is alive, firm and strong in Apple Park workspaces, as is the idea of ??having only one restaurant for all the 12,000 employees on the campus are a gigantic restaurant that, likewise, allows employees from the most diverse areas to exchange ideas and collaborate on projects with varied perspectives. In fact, here is a very curious note: Apple patented, with the help of the chef at Caff Macs (main restaurant on the current Apple campus, in Infinite Loop) and the future Apple Park restaurant. Francesco Longoni, a special pizza box that allows the delicacy to remain crispy and fresh, even encapsulated, which is particularly beneficial for busy employees who need to take lunch to their offices.
Also a very deep space was reserved in the report to the structural details of the main building of the new campus, as for example the huge glass doors with four floors of height that make up one of the entrances of the "spaceship". Apparently, no factory in the world had the capacity to produce such large and curved glass pieces; Apple then convinced Seele Group (a German company partner of Ma that had already made, for example, the glass panels of Apple Fifth Avenue) to create a new machine capable of forging parts. The monumental doors are opened and closed by means of a mechanism positioned below the ground, which provides total silence in its operation, which is important, considering that they are positioned precisely in the restaurant on the campus.
The building's marquees (the horizontal elements that transcend the facade's glass and make the visual division of levels) were also subject to polemics before the final design. Originally, Jobs was against their existence, preferring a building made entirely of uninterrupted glass panels; the elements, however, had to be used to contain natural elements such as sunlight and rain. The problem is that the canopies are also made of glass, and the visual solution was not reflecting the green of the surroundings; it was Jony Ive, then, who solved the problem by proposing to paint the bottom of the pieces white to reflect the green in the right way and, later on, still give the impression that the elements shine in the sunlight. Impressive, isn't it?
Speaking of green, moreover, we already know that Apple Park will have, when 100% completed, more than 9,000 trees on its land, we have detailed this process here in this article. It was a guessing idea! Jobs himself covers his campus with vegetation to make it basically a national park; plants have been handpicked to resist earthquakes and droughts / floods, as well as the buildings themselves as we know, california is an area particularly prone to weather and natural disasters.
Jobs was still one of the original proponents of the building's natural ventilation system: the CEO hated air conditioning and also didn't want employees to waste time opening or closing windows, so he proposed a building that breathed like the people inside it. Several sensors around the building detect the wind direction and position the air intakes so that there is always ventilation running through the interior of the building and, considering that there is practically a forest around it, it is very likely that the temperature will always be mild (forests after all, they are the best temperature regulator in the world). Only on particularly cold or hot days will an artificial climate control system go into action as Apple's chief environmental officer Lisa Jackson says:
It's not like we're asking people to be uncomfortable at work. We are asking them to recognize what part of being connected outside to know 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 you are, what temperature is outside, if the wind is blowing. This was Steve's original intention, to blur the line between the inside and the outside. It kind of wakes up your senses.
The matter still addresses, in the end, some criticisms that architects and specialists in the area made to the Apple Park project. Some accuse Apple of monumentalism and argue that the ?spaceship? concept is too fixed, that is, not allowing possible expansions for future Ma incursions in other lands contrary to the trend of large technology companies, such as Google and Amazon, who build modular work spaces where their employees join the city. In this regard, Norman Foster counters the criticisms:
This building was born out of Steve Jobs' passion. The idea that a beautiful object has descended into this lush and lush landscape and that it will be inhabited by 12,000 people: this is a true utopian sight. So it's part of my job to confront these criticisms and say, "You must be crazy."
Finally, whoever presents the current boss of everything. Tim Cook explains that, at a time when the campus did not yet have a name, Ma executives considered naming the entire space after Steve Jobs. This homage, however, did not seem certain even though Jobs' presence can be felt in all aspects of Apple Park, from the curved glass panels to the tree swings, Jobs was, above all, discreet. Then the decision was made to give its name only to the 1,000-person auditorium that is part of the campus and to house Ma's future launches. Steve Jobs Theater is in the highest area of ??the land, as Cook states:
on a hill, at one of the highest points on campus. It looks like him.