‘We Were the Petri Dish’: Facebook’s Shift to Remote Work Leaves Neighbors in a Lurch
The company’s Menlo Park headquarters have shaped the city. So too would an exodus of employees.
Facebook may be an online platform, but its physical presence is firmly rooted in Menlo Park, California, where its sprawling headquarters and iconic “1 Hacker Way” address are emblematic of the company’s past and future. Since 2011, Facebook has played a dominant role in the small city, and its ongoing expansion there will mark the largest development Menlo Park has ever seen.
It was a surprise, then, when Zuckerberg announced on Thursday that Facebook could become a remote workforce in the coming decade, a decision spurred by the coronavirus, which has shuttered technology campuses across the nation. Fifty percent of Facebook employees may be working remotely in five to 10 years, he estimated — a massive shift from the company’s previous emphasis on an on-site workplace that sees 6,000 people shuttled along 80 routes to its Bay Area campuses each day. Soon, employees will be able to apply to work remotely on a permanent basis, and new job openings will be made available to remote workers beginning this week.
Inside a Secretive $250 Million Private Transit System Just for Techies
1,000 white-collar tech shuttles are stalling Bay Area public transit
“I think Facebook will be the most forward-leaning company on remote work at our scale, and we’ve been working on a thoughtful and responsible plan to do this,” the CEO wrote on Facebook. But what will this transition mean for Menlo Park, a city whose identity has become entwined with Facebook?
Despite Zuckerberg’s estimate that half of employees could be remote by 2025, Facebook has made additional claims that the existing campuses will remain in place. For example, Zuckerberg said in a Thursday livestream on Thursday that he is “committed to keeping our offices and making them great too.”
“We expect to continue to have many people still working out of our offices around the world, including Menlo Park and the Bay Area,” a Facebook spokesperson added in…