Google keeps growing in Seattle area, agrees to buy nearly 10 acres at a car dealership site in Kirkland

Google keeps growing in Seattle area, agrees to buy nearly 10 acres at a car dealership site in Kirkland

A Google building in South Lake Union, Seattle. (GeekWire File Photo / James Thorne)

Google’s footprint in Seattle just keeps on growing.

The Alphabet-owned tech giant signed an agreement to purchase land at a car dealership site in Kirkland, Wash., a spokesperson confirmed Thursday.

Business Insider and Bloomberg reported the news last week. King County records obtained by GeekWire show a sale of nearly 10 acres of land at 11845 NE 85th St., home of Lee Johnson car dealerships. There is no purchase price available yet.

Google did not provide more details. “The site is intended to support Google’s future growth in the area,” a spokesperson said.

It’s the latest expansion for Google this year, even amid the ongoing pandemic that has forced some companies to pull back on physical office space with a shift to remote work.

Google has gobbled up large chunks of the new Kirkland Urban development, just down the street from the car dealership site. Earlier this year it purchased the Kirkland Urban East plot for $40 million.

Last year Google bought about 400,000 square feet of office space across the North and Central buildings at Kirkland Urban. It paid $435.7 million for those two buildings.

Google already has a huge separate campus in Kirkland, the Seattle suburb where the Mountain View, Calif., company first set up shop 16 years ago.

Since then, Google has grown to more than 2 million square feet of office space spread across several cities in the area, including a Google Cloud campus in Amazon’s backyard of South Lake Union in Seattle that opened last year.

Google has more than 5,750 employees total in the region working on everything from Android technology to cloud computing. There are more than 100 open jobs based in the Seattle area.

The expansion comes as other companies reduce their physical space. Seattle-area outdoor retailer REI In August sold its brand new headquarters complex in nearby Bellevue for $367 million to Facebook, another Silicon Valley giant that also continues to grow its presence in the region.

Amazon, headquartered in downtown Seattle, said in September it was adding another 10,000 jobs to its growing Bellevue hub.

Kidder Matthews reported that office vacancy in Seattle rose to 7% in the third quarter, while it was 4.56% on the Eastside, which includes cities such as Kirkland, Redmond, and Bellevue.

Google is allowing employees to work remotely until July 2021 and is considering “hybrid” models for future work. A survey of Google employees from July showed that most want to come back to the office, at least some days.

Redmond, Wash.-based Microsoft is rolling out its own hybrid workplace policy that lets employees have a more flexible remote work schedule and even relocate elsewhere in the country.

Google CEO Sundar Pichai said in April that the company would slow hiring due to the economic crisis. It also slashed marketing budgets in the latter half of 2020.

Alphabet cruised past estimates for its third quarter earnings with $46.17 billion in revenue. Shares of Alphabet are up more than 60% since March.

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2020-11-20 05:56:47

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