Designed by BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group and Heatherwick Studios in close collaboration with Google, Bay View is Google’s first-ever ground-up campus with the mission to operate on carbon-free energy, 24 hours a day, seven days a week by 2030. The buildings deliver on Google’s ambition to create human-centric, sustainable innovations for the future of Google’s workplace as well as scalable, replicable solutions for the construction industry and beyond.
Located on a 42-acre site at the NASA Ames Research Center in Silicon Valley, the Google Bay View Campus, consisting of three buildings, totals 1.1 million sq ft – including 20 acres of open space, two workspace buildings, a 1,000-person event center, and 240 short-term employee accommodation units. All three buildings are constructed as lightweight canopy structures optimized for interior daylight, views, collaboration, experiences and activities.
Bay View’s three new buildings are part of Google’s ambition to be the first major company to operate on carbon-free energy, 24 hours a day, seven days a week by 2030. The site is expected to achieve a LEED-NC v4 Platinum certification and become the largest facility ever to attain the International Living Future Institute (ILFI) Living Building Challenge (LBC) Water Petal Certification.
Anchored in three themes defined by Google’s design brief at the beginning of the project – innovation, nature, and community – the design is driven by flexibility and extraordinary user experience that inspires collaboration and co-creation. Team spaces are on the upper level and gathering spaces are below, separating focus and collaborative areas while still providing easy access to both. The second floor design has variation in floorplates to give teams a designated “neighborhood” area that is highly flexible to change with their needs.
“Our design of the new Bay View campus is the result of an incredibly collaborative design process. Working with a client as data driven as Google has led to an architecture where every single decision is informed by hard information and empirical analysis. The result is a campus where the striking dragonscale solar canopies harvest every photon that hits the buildings; the energy piles store and extract heating and cooling from the ground, and even the naturally beautiful floras are in fact hardworking rootzone gardens that filter and clean the water from the buildings. All in all, a campus where front of house and back of house, technology and architecture, and form and function have been fused into a new and striking hybrid,” says Bjarke Ingels, Founder and Creative Director, BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group.
The Bay View Buildings are split across only two floors, with desks and team spaces on the upper level, and the amenity spaces below. A series of indoor “courtyards” throughout the buildings connect the two levels, giving teams easy access to cafes, kitchenettes, conference rooms, and all-hands spaces. The courtyards also encourage the physiological benefits of physical movement when circulating between levels and different modes of work, and double as wayfinding devices.
Above, the large-span canopy with average orthogonal column spans allows the entire second-level workspaces to be open and connected under one roof. These workspaces prioritize access to natural light and views, with reduced glare through carefully designed clerestory windows punctuating the canopy.
Rather than being segmented by excessive columns and support walls, the structural innovation of the canopy roof allows for a wide-open workspace; every person has equal access to views across the floorplate, and through the perimeter facade and clerestory windows to the outdoors. On the exterior, all three buildings feature a first-of-its-kind “dragonscale” solar skin roof equipped with 50,000 silver solar panels that generate a total of nearly seven megawatts of energy.
This canopy superstructure applied across all the buildings is the result of a multi-year effort to achieve the most functional, energy-efficient, and economical building solution: a net system made of tubular steel with simple clerestory windows between the canopy bays and an opaque roof structure offers the best acoustic control, minimizes thermal heat gain, lower overall energy loads, and allows Google to harvest the maximum amount of solar PV on the outside. It also provides daylight to the workspaces inside without excessive glare, allowing every desk in the building to have views of the outside, and access to daylight throughout most of the day.
“Google Bay View offers a workplace experience that is an antithesis to an urban high-rise; Containing as much area as the tallest office tower in San Francisco, the typically stacked floorplates are redistributed into a flat array, creating a vibrant village. While on-site carbon and water neutrality is challenging for skyscrapers, this bay-scraper typology enables us to harvest the power of the sun, earth, and water. We hope Bay View will provide a quantum leap in the evolution of the workplace, elevate the benchmark for sustainable design, and inspire the next generations of users and visitors to the building,” says Leon Rost, Partner, BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group.
Bay View operates entirely on electric energy and the campus houses the largest geothermal pile system in North America, estimated to reduce carbon emissions by almost 50% and water used for cooling by 90%. In addition, on-site systems built by Google collect, treat, and reuse all stormwater and wastewater and provide habitat restoration, sea level rise protection, and access to the beauty of natural wetlands for both Googlers and the public on the nearby Bay Trail.
Bay View is also a Living Building Challenge (LBC) water-positive campus and on track to be the largest project ever certified by the International Living Future Institute (ILFI) under any of its programs, which are recognized as the most ambitious regenerative building rating systems in the world.
Google’s mission to unlock advancements for the benefit of the entire industry have led to several scalable solutions in working on the Bay View campus: increasing modular construction, geothermal at new scales, innovation in PV design, a permitted blackwater system, waste diverted from landfill, improved total number of products vetted for Red List ingredients, and landscape designed to advance water stewardship and create valuable habitat for threatened wildlife.
Overall, the Google Bay View campus has forged a new framework, materials language, and ecological approach that will help push both the future of the workplace, and the built environment-at-large, forward.
Google Bay View Sustainability Facts:
The site is expected to achieve a LEED-NC v4 Platinum certification and become the largest facility ever to attain the International Living Future Institute (ILFI) Living Building Challenge (LBC) Water Petal Certification.
The integrated geothermal pile system at Bay View, which is the largest in North America, is estimated to reduce carbon emissions by roughly 50% and will help both heat and cool the campus. The massive geoexchange field is integrated into the structural system, reducing the amount of water typically used for cooling by 90%, equal to 5 million gallons of water annually.
Bay View is 100% electric where even the kitchens are electric to decrease carbon emissions.
To help deliver on its commitment to replenish 120% of the water it consumes by 2030, the site is net water-positive with all non-potable water demands being met using the recycled water it generates on site.
The campus includes 17.3 acres of high-value natural areas – including wet meadows, woodlands, and marsh – that contribute to Google’s broader efforts to reestablish missing essential habitat in the Bay Area.
Collaborators: BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group (Design Architect), Heatherwick Studio (Design Architect), Sares Regis (Development Group), Adamson (Executive Architect), STUDIOS (Interior Architect), Populous (Events Consultant), Thornton Tomasetti (Structural Engineers), Integral Group (Mechanical, Plumbing & Fire Protection Engineer), Olin (Landscape Architect), ARUP (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), Teecom (Telecommunications), Whiting-Turner (General Contractor), Applied Wayfinding (Signage & Wayfinding), A10 (Sustainability & LEED Consultant)
Location Text: Mountain View, California
Partner-in-charge: Bjarke Ingels, Beat Schenk, Daniel Sundlin, Leon Rost, Thomas Christoffersen
Project Leaders: Blake Smith, Ryan Harvey, David Iseri, Florencia Kratsman
Project Managers: Linus Saavedra, Ziad Shehab
Team: Agla Egilsdottir, Alessandra Peracin, Ali Chen, Andriani Atmadja, Alvaro Velosa, Armen Menendian, Benjamin Caldwell, Benson Chien, Bernard Peng, Brian Zhang, Camilo Aspeny, Cheyne Owens, Christopher Wilson, Claire Thomas, Cristian Lera, Cristina Medina-Gonzalez, Danielle Kemble, David Spittler, Deborah Campbell, Derek Wong, Diandian Li, Dylan Hames, Erik Kreider, Eva Maria Mikkelsen, Guillaume Evain, Hacken Li, Helen Chen, Isabella Marcotulli, Isela Liu, Jason Wu, Jennifer Dudgeon, Jennifer Kimura, Jennifer Wood, Jeremy Siegel, Jia Chengzhen, Ji-Young Yoon, Jian Yong Khoo, John Hilmes, Jonathan Fournier, Joshua Plourde, Julien Beauchamp-Roy, Kalina Pilat, Kiley Feickert, Kurt Nieminen, Lina Bondarenko, Mads Kjaer, Manon Otto, Marcus Kujala, Maria Acosta, Meghan Bean, Michelle Stromsta, Nandi Lu, Nicole Passarella, Olga Khuraskina, Oliver Colman, Otilia Pupezeanu, Patrick Hyland, Peter Kwak, Ramona Montecillo, Rita Sio, Sebastian Claussnitzer, Sebastian Grogaard, Seo Young Shin, Shu Zhao, Siva Sepehry Nejad, Terrence Chew, Thomas McMurtrie, Tiago Sa, Timothy Cheng, Tingting Lyu, Valentino Vitacca, Vincenzo Polsinelli, Walid Bhatt, Yesul Cho, Yina Moore
Designed by BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group and Heatherwick Studios in close collaboration with Google, Bay View is Google’s first-ever ground-up campus with the mission to operate on carbon-free energy, 24 hours a day, seven days a week by 2030. The buildings deliver on Google’s ambition to create human-centric, sustainable innovations for the future of Google’s workplace as well as scalable, replicable solutions for the construction industry and beyond. Located on a 42-acre...
- Year 2022
- Work finished in 2022
- Client Google
- Status Completed works
- Type Colleges & Universities / Research Centres/Labs / Interior Design