TECH DEVELOPMENT

Oracle plans to nearly double size of Austin campus, city documents show

New plans filed with the city of Austin show just how much larger the corporate campus along South Lakeshore Boulevard is about to get.

Posted April 11th, 2018

Oracle’s massive Austin waterfront campus is about to get even bigger.

In March, Oracle moved into its new, five-story building in Southeast Austin that spans more than half a million square feet and overlooks Lady Bird Lake.

Now, new plans filed with the city of Austin show just how much larger the corporate campus along South Lakeshore Boulevard is about to get.

The city documents show that the company’s plans for a second phase would add 420,000 square feet to the existing building, which has 560,000 square feet of space. The new wing would extend from the south side of the existing building into an area that is now open space, the documents show. The plans are awaiting approval by the city.

Oracle, the second-largest software company in the world, has not said when it plans to start construction on the expansion.

The Redwood Shores, Calif.-based company has said its first phase will house 3,000 tech workers, many of them millennials.

In an interview late last year, Scott Armour, senior vice president of Oracle Digital, said the second phase would house “another couple thousand” employees.

PHOTO GALLERY: Peek inside Oracle’s new Austin campus.

Julia Allyn, an Oracle spokeswoman, declined to comment on the projected headcount for the second phase of the Austin campus. She previously said that Oracle has about 2,500 employees in Austin and more than 4,500 in Texas.

However, at a ribbon-cutting ceremony last month, Oracle co-founder Larry Ellison said he expects the corporate campus in Austin to grow to as large as 10,000 employees.

“We have big plans,” Ellison told the crowd. “We have a handful of hubs in the United States, and Austin is one of the key places we want to be because that’s where we think our people want to be.”

Mike Rollins, president of the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce, said the planned expansion is a “continued big win on several fronts…”

“Oracle is a technology iconic brand that other tech companies take notice of…,” Rollins said. “This type of industry notice will be good news as potential other tech followers will look to be part of the Austin region’s secret sauce of success.”

READ: Oracle bets big on Austin, founder Larry Ellison says campus will employ 10,000

Angelos Angelou, an Austin economist, said Oracle’s investment signals that the company “is committed to Austin and intends to grow their presence significantly.

“This means that they find our city and region very attractive for talent recruitment and are counting that Austin and Texas will be a major source of new business growth for their company,” Angelous said.

Angelou compared Oracle’s growth here to Apple’s history in Austin beginning in the early 1990s.

Apple, he said, “had only committed to hiring 300 people initially and maximum up to 700 in 6-7 years. Instead Apple currently owns an over 1 million square foot campus in Austin employing over 6,500 employees.”

The campus, an investment of hundreds of millions of dollars for Oracle, is expected to be transformative for a part of Austin along the East Riverside Drive corridor that is rapidly gentrifying with hundreds of new luxury housing units.

The sleek Oracle campus was designed to attract recent college graduates. It includes outdoor terraces with views of downtown, a fitness center, “huddle rooms” and a “tech bar” to give employees the ability to get computers and devices repaired quickly.

Other amenities include a full-service cafeteria, a gym, a food truck court, game rooms and business training and conference rooms. Smaller kitchens and meeting rooms are spread throughout, and a Starbucks in the lobby often has a line.

Many of Oracle’s Austin hires are recent college recruits who are part of the company’s “Class Of” training program. The company is working to attract young talent as it shifts its focus to the cloud and builds hubs for those sales groups.

Along with its original land purchase, Oracle also bought a new apartment complex just steps from its new office building, as a housing option for its employees. The 295-unit complex, called Azul, was valued at about $69 million this year by the Travis Central Appraisal District, down from $76.6 million last year.

The Azul purchase marked the first time Oracle bought an apartment building on one of its corporate campuses.

Oracle has since purchased an additional 10 acres adjacent to the new campus. The company’s holdings in the area, including Azul, were valued at $248.5 million this year by the Travis Central Appraisal District, with the main campus appraised at $166 million.

Oracle did not seek incentives for the project.

Oracle plans to expand its existing 560,000-square-foot campus with a second phase. The new addition will have 420,000 square feet of office space, along with associated roadways, parking and utility improvements.

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