Apple's 'spaceship' headquarters blasts off in 2016

The company says the new headquarters -- brainchild of Steve Jobs -- will be up and running in three years.

Don Reisinger
CNET contributor Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.
Don Reisinger
Apple's proposed headquarters in Cupertino.
Apple's proposed headquarters in Cupertino, Calif. Apple

Apple's "Spaceship" headquarters, which have been in the planning stages for years and were the brainchild of late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, will be open for business in 2016, the company says.

The news was announced today by CEO Tim Cook at Apple's annual shareholder meeting. He reported that Apple is currently working with the city to gain approval and hopes to break ground for the facility later this year.

Jobs laid out plans for his company's headquarters in 2011. The facility is expected to have four stories and span a whopping 2.8 million square feet. Apple said in 2011 that it hopes to have 12,000 people on the campus -- up from about 2,800 in its current headquarters. However, in revised proposals, that figure has jumped to up to 14,200.

The headquarters was first referred to as a "spaceship" by Jobs himself, who said that it'll look "a bit like a spaceship landed." The circular building will have trees and landscaping in the middle and will not have a single piece of straight glass. Apple has said that the headquarters will be 80 percent landscape with more than 7,000 trees.

Still, the opening is a bit behind schedule. When the plans were first introduced to Cupertino's City Council, Apple said that it hoped to open the doors in 2015.

Cross-Valley rivals Google and Facebook also have plans for fancy new digs.