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Facebook growth prompts plans for second campus

As employees begin moving in to Facebook's new campus in Menlo Park, Calif., the booming social network is already making plans for a second campus nearby that could accommodate 2,800 more people.

Facebook campus in Menlo Park, Calif.
Part of the current Facebook campus in Menlo Park, Calif., where employees are starting to move in. Tom Krazit/CNET

Facebook is outdoing itself.

The world's leading social network topped out at 162 million monthly unique visitors in July--a record high--and it's now the third largest video-sharing site in the United States, just behind Vevo (No. 2) and YouTube (No. 1), according to ComScore's newest data.

With this type of surging growth, no wonder Facebook needs new digs.

Today it was revealed in the San Jose Mercury News that a second Facebook campus is in the works, even as employees are just starting to migrate from the company's current location in Palo Alto, Calif., to a sprawling new headquarters in nearby Menlo Park. The 57-acre site, previously occupied by Sun Microsystems, is currently approved to house up to 3,600 Facebook employees. But Facebook is hoping to get eventual approval from the city to house more than 9,000 employees, according to the report.

The new 22-acre campus, the Mercury News reports, would be located just southwest of the main campus and could accommodate 2,800 additional staffers. Construction is slated for early 2013.

"While the locations of the buildings and the related infrastructure have been outlined, we are still working on the final design and are excited about the potential for the site," a Facebook representative said.

"They're not going to grow to 9,600 people overnight, but if they want to get to that size in the next couple of years you have to start planning things now," said a person familiar with the company. "Given the players going after Facebook, they want to be ready if they need to grow."