Google Halts Expansion Efforts at Kirkland Urban Facility Outside Seattle


Citing a recent report from real estate firm Broderick Group, Google has apparently put a hold on its expansion plans at the Kirkland Urban campus near Seattle.

Key takeaways:

– Google reportedly suspends construction and buildout at its Kirkland Urban campus.
– The tech giant cancelled a sublease agreement with Salesforce-owned Tableau for 120,000 square feet of space.
– Google’s expansion plans had suggested growth in Kirkland, but recent decisions show a shift.
– The company has eliminated 12,000 positions since January 2023, but there are still over 200 job openings in the Seattle area.

Development Postponed at Kirkland Urban

The Broderick Group Q1 market update revealed Google was inactive at its Kirkland Urban campus. According to this report, Google has not developed a recently completed building. Additionally, construction on another building at the location has been suspended.

Just last year, Google opened two buildings at Kirkland Urban, inviting Governor Jay Inslee and other officials to celebrate continued investment in the Seattle region. The company initially announced the four building campus would total a sizable 760,000 square feet, with the fourth building set for completion in 2025.

Vacant Space in Kirkland


Interestingly, Google ended a sublease agreement with Tableau, a Salesforce company, for 120,000 square feet of space at the Kirkland campus. Initially, this seemed to signal prospective growth. However, Broderick’s report indicates that Google has decided not to utilize this space.

The real estate firm also stated that Google has over 400,000 square feet of space in ‘shell condition,’ meaning it is not yet finished, in Kirkland. This information seems to imply a possible slowdown in Google’s previously anticipated Kirkland Urban growth.

Other Kirkland Locations


Besides Kirkland Urban, Google owns two other campuses in the Kirkland area, which includes retail and dining establishments like Shake Shack and Topgolf. But it seems that even just a few years ago, all signs pointed towards growth.

This changed last year when Google backed out of a 1.5 million square foot project on property occupied by a Lee Johnson auto dealership, located nearby Kirkland Urban. Google appears not to be alone in this trend. Other tech giants based on the east side of Seattle, including Microsoft and T-Mobile, have also vacated offices or put space on the sublease market. This trend aligns with the rise in hybrid work policies, a factor contributing to the office vacancy rates more than doubling since 2020.

Seattle Region Job Market


There’s a mixed picture in the job market within the Seattle region. While Google laid off 12,000 workers as of January 2023 and seems to be reducing its workforce size, the company also has over 200 job openings in the area.

Despite the cutbacks, Google remains a significant employment entity in the region. Statistics from 2022 indicate that Google employed more than 7,000 people in the Seattle area. Meanwhile, other tech companies, such as TikTok owner ByteDance and The Pokémon Company, have signed large new leases, continuing to expand.

Workplace Requirements


As part of their work policies, Google mandates employees to be in the office for at least three days per week. The company played a key pioneering role when it set up its offices in Kirkland. This move was soon emulated by other tech behemoths like Meta, eBay, Apple, amongst many others, establishing their engineering offices in the area to tap into the region’s technical talent base, signalling the area’s significant tech industry growth.

In conclusion, with Google’s office expandion pause at the Kirkland Urban campus, it becomes evident that the continuing realities of post-pandemic work practices are still shaping strategies of tech giants. The future of Google’s presence in the Seattle area remains to be seen.

Jonathan Browne
Jonathan Browne
Jonathan Browne is the CEO and Founder of Livy.AI

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