Facebook already has a large presence in Seattle’s urban core, but the company is increasingly expanding its operation to other parts of the region.
In two newly confirmed deals, the tech giant has leased an additional 85,000-square feet in two more Bellevue buildings, adding to its already sizable presence in the Seattle suburbs commonly known as the Eastside. The deals in Skyline Tower and Key Center were disclosed by John Kilroy, CEO of Kilroy Realty Corp., in the property owner’s latest earnings call.
It’s part of a broader trend in which tech companies are establishing operations on both sides of Lake Washington. Another prime example this year was Amazon leasing the entire Expedia headquarters building from Equity Commonwealth, as the travel giant prepares to move its headquarters to the Seattle waterfront.
Talking with analysts and investors, Kilroy said it’s similar to what’s happening in the Bay Area, as companies put operations in San Francisco and Silicon Valley.
“If you have a bunch of employees on the Eastside and you’re Amazon, why force them to go over the bridge and to drive into the city?” he said. “Go to them. And then we’re seeing the exact reverse as well. Some of the big Bellevue tenants are now talking about a significant presence in South Lake Union downtown Seattle because they’ve got employees over there and they don’t want to go work for Amazon or whomever it might be.”
A large portion of Facebook’s Eastside presence is for its Oculus virtual-reality company. We’ve contacted Facebook for more information about its plans for these new spaces.
Facebook’s leases at Skyline Tower and Key Center were first reported by the Puget Sound Business Journal, along with a larger Facebook lease in Bellevue’s Civica Office Commons that has yet to be confirmed.