News Analysis

Will Aggressive Performance Goals Fit Under Google’s Glass Tent?

The design of Google’s green headquarters hinges on new technologies, like a “glass fabric” enclosure.

Google’s proposed design for its new headquarters in Mountain View, California, shows translucent glass canopies draped over what look like tent poles. The idea—from a collaboration between top-tier architects Bjarke Ingles of Demark and Thomas Heatherwick of England—is to “free spaces from traditional architectural limitations like walls, windows, and roofs,” according to Google. The space will be built on lightweight, prefabricated floor plates that can be reconfigured as needs change.

The ambitious design, which is targeting LEED Platinum and the net-zero water petal under the Living Building Challenge, has drawn mixed reactions.

Published March 23, 2015