Facebook has grown its business from a humble college experiment to the world’s largest social network in just over a decade, one that continues to swell to this very day. It’s no surprise, then, that the company’s headquarters in Menlo Park, California, is once again due for an expansion.
The social network is planning to make room for an additional 6,500 employees, a fact that’s rubbing some locals the wrong way. Residents are concerned that the swell of new people into the city will cause the cost of housing – already a limited commodity – to skyrocket. What’s more, many are turned off by the proposition of their small town transforming into a busy city.
Facebook, however, has presented an unusual alternative in that it has pledged to build at least 1,500 residential units (apartments) alongside its expansion. The units wouldn’t be built to exclusively house its employees, but rather, for the general public.
John Tenanes, Facebook’s real estate chief, said there is a lack of housing in the area and that their intent is to make an impact. Specifically, he said, they want to try something new and something bold to try and make a difference.
The proposal dictates that 15 percent of the housing units would be reserved for low- and middle-income families.
In March 2015, Facebook completed a massive expansion of its Menlo Park headquarters that boasts the largest open floor plan in the world. Like other tech giants, Facebook’s campus is rife with leisurely activities and green space including a nine-acre park with 400 trees that sits atop the building’s roof.