Microsoft announces major overhaul of its Redmond campus

Microsoft's Redmond campus is in for a major facelift.

Microsoft has announced a massive overhaul to its main campus in Redmond, Washington. Set to start in earnest in fall 2018, the project will see 18 new buildings and 2.5 million square feet of new office space added to the campus.

As part of the project, Microsoft will also tear down older buildings that no longer fit its needs. However, the net result will be an increase from 125 buildings today to 131 buildings once the project is complete. The expansion will add enough room for 8,000 more people, and the construction itself will involve around 2,500 construction and development jobs over the course of the five to seven years it will take to complete.

In a post announcing the overhaul, Microsoft President Brad Smith stated:

As our employees create the tools and services of the future workspace for our customers, it's important they have a campus that reflects that future for themselves. We will create that workplace in part by applying our learnings from our other recent campus redevelopment projects in Redmond, Vancouver B.C. and the Paddington office in London, and how they have enabled teams to collaborate, showcase our workspace and related technologies for customers and, most importantly, enhance the experience for employees. Our new campus will be more open and less formal, divided into a series of "team neighborhoods" while capturing more natural light and fostering the type of creativity that will lead to ongoing innovation to advance the industry and benefit our customers."

The expansion will also see the addition of a 2-acre open plaza that can fit up to 12,000 people, walking trails, soccer and cricket facilities, and retail space. Moving around campus will also become quite a bit easier, with the addition of an underground parking facility, as well as a foot- and cyclist-only bridge across WA-520 to connect both sides of campus. The bridge will also tie into a forthcoming Link Light Rail station set to arrive in 2023.

Work on the campus overhaul will begin in fall 2018 and is expected to last up to seven years.