Report: Apple spent more than $1B on construction of new 'spaceship' HQ
Apple likely spent at least $1.15 billion on the construction of its new headquarters in Cupertino, CA, according to an analysis of public building permit data in the city by data company BuildZoom.
Permits for the 2.8 million-square-foot, ring-shaped main building — a structure that has been likened to a "spaceship" — totaled $427 million, including $85 million for landscaping and irrigation, $14 million for a solar roof and nearly $9 million for two outdoor dining facilities. Other building features included in its report are the Steve Jobs Theater ($179 million), visitor center ($109 million), a secondary office building ($115 million) and parking facilities ($113 million).
The data does not include costs for land, architecture and other design services, demolishing existing buildings on site or other features that are not required to be part of the building permit. Previous reports have Apple's costs for the campus, which opened in April, at $5 billion.
From costs to design details, Apple has traditionally been tight-lipped about its construction and development projects, which are numerous and varied.
In August, it was reported that the tech giant had struck a deal with the state of Iowa and the city of Waukee, IA, to build a $1.3 billion data center there. In exchange for almost $208 million in state and local tax breaks, Apple agreed to donate $100 million to help Waukee make the necessary infrastructure improvements to keep pace with its growing population. The data center will add only 50 permanent jobs, but Waukee expects Apple's investment to attract other local development.
Apple also announced in May that it would double the size of its Reno, NV, data center, translating to an investment of $1 billion. In a related deal, Apple purchased a $4 million downtown warehouse, which will make the company eligible for sales tax breaks on equipment for the data center expansion. Considering Apple's total incentive package, the company will pay a sales tax rate there of about 0.5%.
Many view the benefit packages like the ones Apple will get through these deals as a small price for the potential payoff that comes from having a major tech employer in town. These arrangements are not without critics, however. For example, Taiwanese electronics manufacturer Foxconn is planning to put $10 billion into a flat-panel display factory in Wisconsin, but opponents say the $3 billion benefits package the state is offering the company to locate there is too steep.
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