Google has signed a deal to let more office space in London's King’s Cross after it decided that the plans for its £650 million UK headquarters weren’t extravagant enough.
The Silicon Valley tech goliath has agreed to lease all of 6 Pancras Square, after initially agreeing to take just under half of the space in the building, which is due to be completed later this year.
A Google spokesperson told Techworld: "Google is excited to extend our investment in the King's Cross development project. This announcement forms part of our ongoing plans to make King's Cross our UK home."
The offices that Google will rent are situated directly opposite where the new one million square foot UK HQ is due to be built.
Google architects AHMM – who envisioned a swimming pool and a running track on the roof of a building that would be “as long as the Shard is tall” – have been asked to go back to the drawing board for the new UK HQ.
The office, expected to be able to accommodate up to 5,000 Googlers, was approved by Camden Council in September 2013 as part of a 67-acre redevelopment of the area around King's Cross station.
Google was initially planning to relocate staff in its Victoria and Holborn offices into the new building behind Kings Cross railway station in late 2016. This date was then pushed back to 2017.
Upon realising that building work is yet to commence on the site, Techworld was informed by Google last August that there is now "no target completion date".
Google’s official line on why the HQ has been delayed is that it’s conducting a review of its offices worldwide. However, European director of Google for Work (previously Google Enterprise), Thomas Davies, recently said “the clock is ticking”.
"Given the heritage that we’ve had in the UK and Ireland, Larry [Google co-founder and CEO] actually wants to make a statement, that says, ‘You know what, this is a very special place for us and a very special building for Googlers,'" he said. “What I can say is all of the best experiences that we’ve learnt in Mountain View and Zurich about innovation - we’re having the best of that in London."
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