(This article originally appeared in The Guardian)
A strange thing is happening, thanks to the pandemic. While everyone is stuck working from home, some of the country’s largest tech companies are snapping up real estate like nobody’s business.
Google, for example, announced just last week that it was investing more than $7bn to open new offices and expand data centers across the country. The tech giant is opening offices and data centers in Atlanta, Pittsburgh and Cambridge, Massachusetts, as well as Portland, Oregon, Houston, Reston, Virginia, and South Haven, Mississippi. It will expand data centers and workspaces in Nevada and Nebraska, Washington state, Detroit, Chicago, Ann Arbor and Austin.
The tech giant will “keep growing our offices across the US”, a spokesman for the company said in the Fox Business report. And Google is not alone in this real estate expansion.
Facebook, according to a New York Times report, committed to a “mammoth” 730,000 sq ft lease in the middle of New York last August, which brings its presence up to more than 2.2m sq ft of office space in the city. Throughout 2020 Microsoft snapped up office leases across the country and Apple also added to its square footage in New York City. Amazon is planning a major expansion of nearly 2m sq ft of office space near its headquarters in Bellevue, Washington, and continues to lease and buy millions more square feet of warehouse and office space across the country and in places like New Jersey and Philadelphia.