By Meghan Hall
Facebook continued its expansion in Menlo Park over the summer. The social media technology giant purchased a self storage facility located at 1520 Willow Road in its home town in August of 2018. The 62,000 square foot building, sold by Extra Space Properties, closed for $40.65 million, or approximately $655.65 per square foot.
Facebook’s purchase of the site was just one of 66 industrial deals to occur in the third quarter of 2018, according to Colliers International’s San Francisco Peninsula Third Quarter Research and Forecast Report. The report stated that the quarter was extremely active compared to the 23 deals in the quarter before, the second quarter of 2018, and 46 deals at the same time last year.
While it is unclear at this point what Facebook is planning to do with the site, it is likely that the facility will not remain an industrial asset.
The project site is located next to Facebook’s Menlo Park headquarters; the company’s MPK21 building opened in early September 2018 and was formerly an unoccupied industrial site. Facebook’s expansion throughout the Bay Area has been aggressive in all sectors of the real estate market, with new campuses in the pipeline for Sunnyvale, Mountain View, Fremont and San Francisco in the future. The company’s proposed Willow Village — the application of which was filed in July 2017 — would bring 125,000 square feet of retail space and 1,500 units of housing to Menlo Park. The first phase of construction will be completed in 2021.
In the past nine months, Facebook has made a concerted effort to secure space across the Bay Area, as the company expanded beyond its Menlo Park home base. The technology company announced its ongoing negotiations to lease Kylli’s 767,000 square foot Burlingame Point development in Burlingame, Calif., in August of 2018. Two months prior, in June, Facebook took over WeWork’s 456,760 square foot lease at The Village of San Antonio in Mountain View and one million square feet in a Fremont complex between Dumbarton Circle and Kaiser Drive owned by Peery Arrillaga, as well as another million in Sunnyvale.
Despite the expansion, Facebook will maintain the bulk of its operations in Menlo Park, according to Facebook’s Vice President of Global Facilities and Real Estate John Tenanes in a September 2018 press release regarding the MPK21 campus.
“As we add offices in other cities in the Bay Area, we remain invested in Menlo Park, which will be our headquarters for the foreseeable future,” said Tenanes.