Uber’s Building a 423,000-Square-Foot Temple to the “Sharing Economy”

Uber announced its plans to build a two-building, glass headquarters in San Francisco. (Credit: Shop Architects)

Last week, ride service giant Uber announced its plans for a 423,000-square-foot, two-building headquarters in San Francisco’s Mission Bay neighborhood. From the outside, the building will look like it’s almost entirely made of glass.

(Credit: Shop Architects)

According to the San Francisco Chronicle the structure’s transparency is supposed to match the company’s culture. Adony Beniares, head of workplace operations, told the Chronicle that regardless of title or level of responsibility “there is a transparency we have internally where anybody can talk to anybody about what is going on.” (From debate over the term “sharing economy” to just how much good the transit alternative does for the environment, many would argue about how outwardly see-through the company is.)

Construction on the Uber complex, which will be able to accommodate 3,000 employees, will begin this fall. (An April PricewaterhouseCoopers report predicted that the “sharing economy” will be worth $335 billion by 2025.) But don’t think this is just another open office. As the Chronicle reports:

Interestingly, Uber said that the design of the Mission Bay office would mark a departure from the open office plans that have become so trendy in recent years. Instead, the Uber workstations will be arranged in a series of work areas, each with access to shared support and collaborative work zones.

Uber hopes that the offices will be open by early 2018 at the latest, and the company has high expectations for the surrounding waterfront Mission Bay area. “It’s a great neighborhood now; it’s going to be a super-great neighborhood,” Beniares said. The Chronicle notes that to build the complex, Uber is “seeking to recruit small and minority-owned businesses for the development team.”

(Credit: Shop Architects)

(Credit: Shop Architects)

Jenn Stanley is a freelance journalist, essayist and independent producer living in Chicago. She has an M.S. from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.

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Tags: san franciscoubersharing economyride-hailing