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Wednesday, April 19, 2006, 12:00 pm PT (03:00 pm ET)

Apple to build new 50-acre campus in Cupertino [Updated]

Apple Computer is planning to build a new, 50-acre campus about a mile from its present headquarters in Cupertino, Calif., chief executive Steve Jobs revealed this week.

"What's happened at Apple is that our business has basically tripled in the last five or six years," Jobs said on Tuesday evening at a Cupertino city council meeting. "And what that's meant, is that our headcount in Cupertino has dramatically expanded."

"We are in 30 other buildings now," Jobs continued, "and they keep getting further and further away from the campus."

Having its employees spread over so many locations quickly became "very frustrating" from Apple, Jobs said. So several months ago the company decided that it needed to build a new campus.

"We've rented every scrap of building we could find in Cupertino," Jobs explained.

With a dearth of corporate real estate in Cupertino, Jobs and company initially feared that they would have to shop for expansion space outside the town that has been Apple's home for nearly three decades.

"After looking at a lot of things, we found something in Cupertino that was a possibility.... It was more expensive, a lot more expensive," Jobs told council members.

He explained that Apple had gone ahead and acquired 9 separate properties located next to each other along Interstate 280 near Pruneridge Rd. — across the street from the 100-acre HP parcel.

Jobs said the company plans to level the buildings that currently reside on the combined 50-acre lot to form what will eventually be the company's second home, about a mile away from its current headquarters.

"We're pretty thrilled," Jobs told the city council. "Since we're your largest taxpayer, I thought you might be happy for us."

Jobs said it would likely take three to four years to design and build the campus that will accommodate 3,000 to 3,500 employees.

"We'll probably get larger still," Jobs said referring to the time period beyond its corporate expansion.