Google has announced it will be building 300 modular apartment units for its employees in the face of increasing accommodation costs in Silicon Valley.
Rents in San Francisco have risen by almost 50% since 2010, making it increasingly difficult for the tech company’s staff to afford them. So the tech giant will be paying around USD$30million on temporary, affordable apartments for 300 of its employees.
To solve the problem quickly, Google – or rather its parent company, Alphabet Inc – will be shipping in the pre-fabricated homes from residential start-up, Factory OS in a bid to alleviate the housing crunch in San Francisco’s Bay Area where many of its employees live.
The problem seems to be self-perpetuating, with the ever-increasing staff growth of tech companies putting pressure on the housing market. But the lower cost of the modular construction techniques should result in less expensive rents.
Speaking to The Wall Street Journal, Factory OS Founder and CEO Rick Holliday said, ‘A previous project that we built using modular technology saved tenants $700 a month in rent because of reduced construction costs'.
Google’s apartment move isn’t the first – salesforce.com Inc. already paid to lease 30 floors of a brand new San Francisco apartment tower nearby, with Apple and Facebook also addressing the accommodation needs of their employees in similar projects.