Apple expands beyond Cupertino with large Sunnyvale lease

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Ahead of the completion of its planned "spaceship" headquarters in Cupertino, Calif., Apple has started to expand outside its hometown by leasing a substantial amount of office space in Sunnyvale that could house more than 1,300 employees.

According to real estate agents from Colliers International, the Sunnyvale Research Center will be home to potentially thousands of Apple employees as the tech giant looks for office and research space outside of its Cupertino base-camp, reports Mercury News.

"Apple is going to start moving into the buildings by the end of the first quarter," said Donald Reimann, a senior vice president with Colliers. "This is really a good fit for Apple because it's close to their headquarters."

The four-building complex covers 215,000 square feet and is located about seven miles away from Apple's current campus at 1 Infinite Loop.

It seems that the Mac maker is looking to expand even further as reports claim that the company has begun interior improvements on two buildings at a different Sunnyvale location, which has more than 100,000 square feet of space. Together, the six buildings can accommodate around 1,300 people.

Real estate sources claim that Apple is looking to rent a total of about 700,000 to 800,000 square feet in Sunnyvale, but the rumors have yet to be confirmed.

"Having Apple in Sunnyvale would be great," said Sunnyvale city spokesman John Pilger. "They are a fantastic company."

Sunnyvale Research Center | Source: Colliers

The area is a veritable hotbed of technology, with industry heavyweights Advanced Micro Devices, Yahoo and NetApp all calling the city home.

Recent expansions by Google and Apple have created a construction boom in Sunnyvale and Santa Clara as new towers are being built in anticipation of growing tech companies' need for space.

Apple has also leased space in Cupertino as it awaits competion of a one million square foot super-campus scheduled to open in 2015. Many have likened the new facility to a spaceship because its circular design is reminiscent of a classic sci-fi spacecraft.

It is unclear whether the Sunnyvale spaces will be permanent institutions for new hires or merely temporary facilities to which current Cupertino employees will be moved during relocation to the new "spaceship."