Google Unveils Campus With ‘Dragon Scale’ Solar Skin, Its First Self-Designed HQ
By Alexa Heah, 18 May 2022
Technology giant Google has officially opened its Bay View campus, its very first self-designed headquarters, which not only features the forefront of innovative office spaces but employs sustainable architecture too.
Before starting on the project, the company surveyed employees to figure out just want they wanted from a workplace, and came up with a plan to construct “happy, positive, and creative” rooms for when they come together in teams, as well as isolated spaces “buffered from sound and movement” when deep-focus work needs to be done.
Additionally, the planners paid special attention to elements that affect the senses, such as materials used, daylight, air quality, thermal comfort, and acoustics.
Every desk in the building will enjoy green outdoor views and natural daylight to promote wellbeing of employees, while the special ventilation system uses 100% outside air as opposed to the typical 20% to 30%.
Furthermore, thousands of construction materials—ranging from carpet tiles to paints, piping, plywood, and furniture—were vetted to choose those with the lowest amount of toxins.
Not to mention, in terms of sustainability, Bay View campus’ façade makes use of a first-of-its-kind ‘dragon scale’ solar skin and nearby wind installations to operate carbon-free 90% of the time.
It’s currently waiting to be certified by the International Living Future Institute (ILFI) as the largest project under the program, and is looking to secure the Water Petal Certification, which means the site is net-positive with recycled water used for all non-potable water demands.
On the building, above-ground pods will gather rainwater throughout the year, before flowing to a waste wear treatment system below that uses the water to cool towers, flush toilets, and irrigate the green landscape.
While within the building itself, everything has been built to be all-electric, including two kitchens that make use of electric cooking equipment instead of gas. This, along with the 17.3 acres of natural areas planted by Google, aims to conserve the environment by minimizing carbon emissions and replenish native landscapes to the area.
Take a look at a video of the campus below.
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