Apple 2.0

Covering the business that Steve Jobs built

Apple's latest Cupertino land grab

November 25, 2010: 5:32 AM ET

Its campus "bursting at the seams," the company gobbles up another slice of its home town

Click to enlarge. Source: Silicon Valley Mercury News

In the second major expansion of its corporate headquarters in four years, Apple (AAPL) has purchased a 98-acre parcel of land in Cupertino, according to a report in Thursday's Silicon Valley Mercury News

The new parcel -- formerly the Cupertino campus of Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) -- is adjacent to 50 acres Apple acquired in 2006. Together, the two properties form a T-shaped tranche of commercial real estate more than four times the size of the company's cross-town campus at Infinite Loop, which had grown to 35 acres since Apple first occupied it in 1977 the early 1990s. In the past year, the company added 12,300 employees to its global work force of 46,600, many of them in Cupertino.

"We now occupy 57 buildings in Cupertino and our campus is bursting at the seams," Apple's Steve Dowling told the Mercury News. "These offices will give us more space for our employees as we continue to grow."

Steve Jobs, who attended Cupertino's Homestead High School, told the city council in April 2006 that the company had considered other cities with lower land costs.

"But after looking at a lot of things, we found something in Cupertino that was a possibility," Jobs said. "It was more expensive, a lot more expensive, than we could get elsewhere, but it was something where we could stay in the area that we like the best."

Below: Satelite views of the three properties, taken at the same scale from Google Earth.

Property 3: 98 acres, acquired 2010

Purchased in 2010. Image: Google Earth

Property 2: 50 acres, acquired 2006

Purchased in 2006. Image: Google Earth

Property 1: 35 acres, originally occupied in the early 1990s

Original campus. Image: Google Earth

[Follow Philip Elmer-DeWitt on Twitter @philiped]

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Philip Elmer-Dewitt
Philip Elmer-DeWitt
Editor, Apple 2.0, Fortune

Philip Elmer-DeWitt has been following Apple since 1982, first for Time Magazine, and now on the Web for

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