Business

Microsoft to rebuild Redmond campus, including cricket pitch

Elvis had Graceland. Will Microsoft have Gatesland?

By Simon Sharwood

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Poll Apple built a spaceship, Amazon's tendered for a town and now Microsoft's announced a “multi-year campus refresh project” that will see it splash US$150m to renovate 6.7 million square feet of its offices, add eight new buildings and lay a cricket pitch.

The money will be poured into the company's Redmond campus, which will emerge capable of housing 47,000 workers, with room for another 8,000 as needs arise.

Microsoft's built and/or renovated other offices of late and company president Brad Smith said those efforts “enabled teams to collaborate, showcase our workspace and related technologies for customers and, most importantly, enhance the experience for employees.” The company now wants more of all that at its Redmond mothership.

Much of the campus will be car-free, there'll be a “two-acre open plaza that will fit up to 12,000 people” and even a cricket pitch, so that CEO Satya Nadella can see his favourite sport.

Reg staff at Vulture South and Vulture West quickly imagined that Microsoft might use the opportunity to give bits of the campus names that reflect its past and future. “Antitrust Avenue” could be a useful reminder of bad old Microsoft. Workers will probably respond better to kinder alliteration on “Azure Avenue”, “Windows Way” or "DOS Drive". If anyone at Microsoft can remember DOS.

If those streets are in a grid, surely they must collectively be called "The .net". And might the tunnel into the copious underground car parks become known as the “Office Orifice”?

Some of the campus parkland surely deserves to be named the “CTRL-ALT-Dell”? We agreed that staff at campus restaurants deserve to be called “Windows Servers”?

Our hacks could not, however, agree on one name for the rebooted campus. We leave that to you, dear readers, in either the poll below or the comments. ®

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