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Monday, February 02, 2004, 09:10 am PT (12:10 pm ET)

Apple negotiating Austin-based corporate relocation

Representatives of Cupertino, Calif.-based Apple are in serious talks to occupy space in Riata Crossing that's being vacated by Plano-based technology outsourcing company Electronic Data Systems Corp (EDS), according to the Austin Business Journal.

The Northwest Austin, Texas location amounts to roughly 275,000 square feet and could potentially become a consolidated home of the computer maker's Austin operations.

Currently, Apple leases a 52,000-square-foot location at Promontory Point H-1 at 2323 Ridgepoint Drive; Promontory Point H-2 at 2401 Ridgepoint Drive for another 54,975 square feet; and about 95,000 square feet of office for customer support and sales in two buildings at 2420 Ridgepoint Drive in Promontory Point. In addition, the company also occupies a 39,000-square-foot location in Building B of Braker Center III at 11701 Stonehollow Drive. Combined, the locations amount to around 241,000 square feet.

In August, Apple's Dallas brokers at Swearingen Realty Group LLC began looking for a 250,000-square-foot replacement for the company's Austin business operations, but a lease was never signed. Apple's North and Northeast Austin leases are set to expire around August 2004, while EDS' lease of the 275,000-square-foot facility runs through November.

The Riata Crossing location could potentially give way to corporate expansion among a number of Apple's Austin-based divisions, sources said, as it is still uncertain if the property search excludes a new home of a certain Apple business unit currently in an existing space.