Facebook’s green-roofed, Frank Gehry-designed campus was just given the green light by the city of Menlo Park. Submitted for approval last fall, the campus will connect with the company’s current headquarters via an underground tunnel, and it will feature Gehry’s signature furling architecture – although it was slightly toned down from the original plan. The sprawling 433,555-square-foot complex will rise like a hillside with an oak tree-filled park on its roof.

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Last Tuesday, the Palo Alto council gave Facebook the go ahead to begin construction on the starchitect-designed expansion of their California headquarters. The second campus, although not LEED certified, will be eco-friendly, adding massive park-like space to the area, both in and on the complex. The entire campus will be tree-lined, including the forested roof which itself will feature grassy knolls, benches and walking trails. The elevated park will span the length of the complex, and be offered as a lunch spot for the 6,000 new employees that will be hired over the next six years. Cafes and kiosks will also pepper the roof park. In keeping with Menlo Park’s Water Efficient Landscape Ordinance, 80% of the plants will be native, low water users.

Gehry’s original designs included a butterfly wing-like building, which was nixed by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg as being “too flamboyant.” But Gehry signature whirls and furls, although toned down, will still be evident around the campus. The white stucco building will let nature take the lead, and appear more unassuming, like a hillside that just happens to have one of the biggest social media companies in the world operating under it.

+ Gehry Partners

Via Fast Company