Apple's much-anticipated new flagship campus will start welcoming employees through its doors in April, as the tech giant reveals a special tribute to the late Steve Jobs will take pride of place within the ring-shaped, suitably state-of-the-art structure.
To honour his memory and mark how Jobs envisioned the 175-acre "Apple Park" as a centre for creativity and collaboration, Apple Park's theatre will be named the Steve Jobs Theatre.
Opening later this year, the entrance to the 1,000-seat auditorium is a 20-foot-tall glass cylinder, 165 feet in diameter, supporting a metallic carbon-fibre roof. The Steve Jobs Theater is situated atop a hill – one of the highest points within Apple Park – overlooking meadows and the main building.
That main building amounts to a 2.8 million sq ft loop, clad entirely in the world's largest panels of curved glass. The process of moving over 12,000 employees into it will take over six months, and construction of the buildings and parklands is scheduled to continue through the summer.
Apple CEO Tim Cook said of the tribute to his former boss:
“Steve’s vision for Apple stretched far beyond his time with us. He intended Apple Park to be the home of innovation for generations to come.
"The workspaces and parklands are designed to inspire our team as well as benefit the environment. We’ve achieved one of the most energy-efficient buildings in the world and the campus will run entirely on renewable energy.”
“Steve was exhilarated, and inspired, by the California landscape, by its light and its expansiveness. It was his favourite setting for thought. Apple Park captures his spirit uncannily well,” said Laurene Powell Jobs. “He would have flourished, as the people of Apple surely will, on this luminously designed campus.”
Jony Ive, Apple's chief design officer, added:
“Steve invested so much of his energy creating and supporting vital, creative environments. We have approached the design, engineering and making of our new campus with the same enthusiasm and design principles that characterise our products.
"Connecting extraordinarily advanced buildings with rolling parkland creates a wonderfully open environment for people to create, collaborate and work together. We have been extremely fortunate to be able to work closely, over many years, with the remarkable architectural practice Foster + Partners.”
Apple Park will also include a visitors centre with an Apple Store and cafe open to the public, as well as a 100,000 sq foot fitness centre for Apple employees and secure research and development facilities. The parklands offer two miles of walking and running paths for employees, plus an orchard, meadow and pond within the ring’s interior grounds.