Google maintains that it will build its new UK headquarters on a plot of land behind King's Cross Station in Central London but staff appeared to be in the dark as to when the move will happen when Techworld spoke to them yesterday.
Alina Dimofte, a member of Google’s media relations team, said: “We’re committed to the area. It’s totally happening - it’s just a matter of time now. I don’t think any building project has ever been delivered on time.”
The Silicon Valley internet giant was expected to move into its £650 million HQ in King’s Cross in 2016 but building work is yet to start on the site opposite the Guardian Media Group.
Speaking at the “Ok Google” interactive tour in London, European director of Google for Work (previously Google Enterprise), Thomas Davies, said: “The clock is ticking...just longer than we thought.
"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 added. “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."
Ed Parsons, Google geospatial technologist, added: “I wish we knew [when it’s going to be ready]. You know as much as we do. We know it’s gone back to the drawing board.”
Google said the King's Cross project has been put on hold because the company is reviewing how it wants its buildings around the world to look from the exterior. As a result of this review process, Google said in August that it no longer has a target completion date for the King's Cross project.
The office, expected to be able to accommodate up to 5,000 Googlers, was approved by Camden Council last September as part of a 67-acre redevelopment of the area around King's Cross station.
Google was initially planning to relocate staff in Victoria and Holborn into the new building behind Kings Cross railway station in late 2016. However, last November, the company said the building would not be ready until at least 2017. At the time, Google also said it was seeking more ambitious designs than those put forward by lead architect AHMM, even though they featured a running track and a swimming pool on the roof.
It remains unclear when Google will move to King's Cross.