By Jon Peterson
Over the last 24 months, one of the fastest growing companies in the Bay Area has been Facebook. Leasing buildings from San Francisco to Newark, from Burlingame to Sunnyvale, the company’s seemingly insatiable appetite for modern workplace is evident throughout the entire region. This week, Facebook announced that it will be opening two additional buildings at its new campus, its fourth, in Sunnyvale by March of 2021. The new buildings are part of phase II of the Moffett Towers development located at 1180 Discovery Way, and the company celebrated the launch of this space with media, guests and city dignitaries earlier this week.
“Our commitment to the project in Sunnyvale represents one of the biggest leases signed by Facebook. This is an amazing place, as we have just moved in some of our employees into the first building,” said John Tenanes, vice president of global facilities and real estate for Facebook.
Tenanes was joined at the event by Larry Klein, the mayor of Sunnyvale, Arun Chandra, vice president of scaled operations at Facebook, Christopher Hom, director of real estate and facilities, and Juan Salazar, director of local policy & community engagement at Facebook. Jay Paul, the developer and leader of the eponymous San Francisco-based development firm was also on hand at the event, welcoming his new tenant to the property.
The tenant will be occupying a total of one million square feet in the three buildings of the property that totals around 1.8 million square feet. The rest of the space will be taken by Amazon, which has a lease for 850,000 square feet in the campus.
Facebook has worked with Jay Paul in the past, and it leases one of its towers in San Francisco. “We have a current lease with the property owner at 181 Fremont in San Francisco. Sunnyvale will represent our fourth campus in the San Francisco Bay Area to go along with San Francisco, Burlingame and Fremont. The project in Sunnyvale will be very sustainable. Not only will it allow no single-use water bottles, but also there will be no disposable food containers,” said Christopher Hom.
This new campus for Facebook will host a mix of new hires and relocated team members. Groups that will call this campus home will include a mixture of the company’s infrastructure, artificial realty/virtual reality, recruiting, facilities, global operations and legal teams. Each of the buildings in the project will cover 8 stories and be LEED gold certified. Once the campus is totally built out, it will feature two cafes and 739 conference and work rooms. The project will also have a 52,500 square foot fitness center.
Along with Facebook and Amazon, Jay Paul also counts Google and Apple as its tenants across the region. In Sunnyvale, the developer purchased in December of 2015 an approved project called Central & Wolfe from Landbank for $177.5 million. It had been pre-leased to Apple, but according to industry sources, Landbank had difficulty obtaining financing for its development. Jay Paul stepped in and has since finished the 777,000 square foot project and helped Apple expand its presence in the city.
Along the same time this purchase was under way, the company was already working with city officials on the approval of its Moffett Towers II development, which this week welcomed Facebook.
During this time, Facebook has been very active expanding its presence across the region, and it has aggressively pursued space across the entire Bay Area over the past two years. In January of this year, the company finalized its lease in Burlingame Point, a brand new approximately 803,000-square-foot office campus currently under construction in Burlingame. The company leased the the entire project from developer Kylli as home for its Oculus enterprise.
Late in 2018, Facebook continued its expansion across the Dumbarton Bridge into Fremont and Newark where it occupies over one million square feet of space. Its latest lease there was announced in January of 2019 for over 225,000 square feet at the Morton Commerce Center in Newark. The industrial campus, owned by Gardena, Calif.-based Overton Moore Properties, will be delivered during the second and third quarters of 2019.
In June of 2018, the company also made news when it subleased all of WeWork’s 456,000 square feet at the Village of San Antonio in Mountain View. The company had initially leased just over 200,000 square feet in one of the buildings but subsequently took the rest of the project. WeWork had in turn subleased this entire project from LinkedIn in October of 2017.
In San Francisco, Facebook has leased the entire 750,000 square foot Park Tower from a joint venture led by MetLife Investment Management, The John Buck Company and Golub & Company, as well as Jay Paul’s entire 432,000 square foot commercial space at 181 Fremont.
This was all done as the company’s plans in Menlo Park continue to grow and where it is working with Peninsula Innovation Partners, LLC and Signature Development Group on a development called Willow Village. By the time this is complete, Facebook plans to accommodate around 35,000 employees in Menlo Park properties east of U.S. 101 by 2028, roughly doubling the nearly 15,000 employees the company has in the city today.