Seattle DJC.com Local Business News & Data – Real Estate

Seattle DJC.com Local Business News & Data – Real Estate

June 14, 2022

Facebook and Frank Gehry plan to build a second Redmond building on Willows Road

Looking to the northwest, Building Z features a jagged roof and blue plaque.

Building X, to the north, has been completed.


BNBuilders has been completed and is probably halfway through construction of Building X, for Facebook/Meta, on Willows Road in Redmond. Gehry Partners, led by Frank Gehry, is the architect. We’ll summarize the details below.

Now Gehry plans to build a Z for the same client, on the land immediately to the south at 10201 Willows Road NE. This project will receive its first design review on Thursday, in a virtual presentation.

The two buildings will be connected by a 108-foot pedestrian bridge. Facebook acquired the 15-acre former Crane Electronics property in 2017 for $20 million, and later demolished the first (north) of the two old Crane buildings. Building Z will replace the second south building. There is no indication yet that there might be a Y building in the future.

Building Z, which is also located on a sloped, forested site, is planned to consist of four underground and structured levels with 811 parking spaces. The top three floors will have approximately 336,701 square feet of office space for Meta Reality Lab engineers and staff.

“Building Z is a laboratory for engineers at Meta Reality Lab,” Gehry writes. “Like its neighboring building, Building

“The client team requested a building like Bell Labs, Eero Saarinen’s magnificent research building in New Jersey. They liked the simple, straightforward design of this building and the way moving inside it caused engineers to bump into each other, talk, collaborate and innovate on an unprecedented level. We were inspired by this the design.”

In fact, Building Z has a ridged roof in some areas, suggesting the presence of light wells (or religious rooms) that were common in industrial buildings in the past. There are plenty of terraces and outdoor mingling areas too. There is a large central atrium to connect the office levels. It is planned to establish approximately 200 bicycle kiosks.

Blue will be the primary color if not the dominant color.

Gehry will target LEED Platinum certification through solar panels, electric vehicle charging in the garage, all-electric systems, low-carbon construction methods, and recycling rooftop watersheds and rainwater throughout the site. Salmon Safe certification is also a goal. “We propose a development that does not negatively bleed into local ecosystems,” the architect wrote.

One design Gehry cites for a pedestrian bridge is the Wilburton trestle at Bellevue. The new covered extension will have a boardwalk, and its angled steel supports also nod to that and other ancient trestles from our area’s logging past.

Both buildings have been — or will be — largely covered by Douglas fir trees, which lie about 100 feet from Willows Road. Their large but discreet presence was intentional, the architect says: “When Frank Gehry first met Mark Zuckerberg, Mark told him he didn’t want flashy, distinctive buildings. He wanted buildings that worked well, but were anonymous. He wanted architecture that expressed his company’s values.” : Modest, forward-looking, unfinished, a work in progress, highly flexible, and most of all buildings that can fly under the radar.

There are currently two Comansa cranes swinging atop Building X, at 10301 Willows. It is slated to contain about 350,000 square feet of office and laboratory space over three levels of parking.

The team there is almost exactly identical to the team in Building Z, which BNBuilders is supposed to be building. Working on Building Z are Gustafson Guthrie Nicol, landscape architect; Coughlin Porter Lundin, civilian; Magnuson Klemencic Associates, Structural; Simpson Gompertz and Haeger, Fire and Life Safety; Walker Consultants, Car Parking; Associate Engineers, Electrical and Mechanical Engineering; Tillotson Design Associates; light; Newson Brown Acoustics; Bush, Rudd, and Hitchings, surveyor; Davie Resource Group, arborist; Talasaya, environmental consultant; transpo group; Aspect Consulting, environmental consultant

The latter, before the land deal, prepared a website report for Facebook that simply called the whole “Project Mammoth.”


Brian Miller can be reached via email at brian.miller@djc.com or by phone at (206) 219-6517.

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