A new interview with Apple design chief Jony Ive has shed more light on his role in designing Apple's new campus, Apple Park. Ive and Apple CEO Tim Cook talked about how Apple Park's design facilitates more interaction between employees, making face-to-face communication easier and even encouraging casual meetings in using the design of the hallways.
From The Wall Street Journal:
Ive and Cook place great importance on employees being physically together at work—ironic for a company that has created devices that enable people to work from a distance. Face-to-face communication is essential during the beginning of a project, when an idea is sprouting, they say. Once a model emerges from a series of conversations, it draws people in and gives focus. "For all of the beauty of technology and all the things we've helped facilitate over the years, nothing yet replaces human interaction," says Cook, "and I don't think it will ever happen."
Ive also spoke about the environmental impact of Apple Park on the surrounding area, dismissing the idea that Apple's new campus is contributing to a Bay Area tree shortage:
Ive takes offense at the idea that he hasn't already thought of every detail during the years of planning Apple Park. He scoffs at an article claiming that Apple contributed to a tree shortage in the Bay Area by buying up so many plants for the campus, "as if we'd got to the end of our project and we thought, Oh, we'd better plant some trees." Apple began working with an arborist years ago to source trees, including varieties that once made up the bountiful orchards of Silicon Valley; more than 9,000, many of them drought-resistant, will have been planted by the time the campus is finished.
The Wall Street Journal notes that Ive and his team will begin occupying Apple Park this fall, as some of the last Apple employees to move into the new facility.