Designing vibrant, inclusive places that respond to their local context and create benefits for everyone.

3 minutes

An early rendering shows the public plaza at Gradient Canopy.

With Bay View and Gradient Canopy, we wanted to create vibrant, welcoming places that lead the way in sustainable design and are mutually beneficial to local communities and Google. No matter what, we’re always striving to be a helpful neighbor. That’s why at Gradient Canopy we focused on creating inclusive and inviting community spaces for the neighbors, visitors, and Googlers. To us, it’s not just about designing the best places to work, but about building new pathways for connection that help our local communities thrive.

"We’re asking how these places can have a positive environmental and social impact on everyone they touch,"

– Joe Van Belleghem, Google’s senior director of global development

With Gradient Canopy, we were thoughtful about weaving the building into its context. Snaking around the building and through the 18-acre site is a dedicated Green Loop with bicycle and pedestrian paths. Here people can enjoy the native landscaping and public art that makes up the building’s exterior public spaces.

On the west side, the building opens to adjacent Charleston Park, welcoming the public to the Google Visitor Experience. Whether you’re connecting with friends at the Cafe, attending an event at the Huddle, exploring products and services at the Google Store, discovering local businesses at the Pop-Up Shop, or tapping into your curiosity in the plaza with art and programming, there’s something for everyone. The Huddle offers a range of events and workshops to highlight local nonprofits and community organizations, while serving as a social node for the Mountain View campus and the broader North Bayshore neighborhood.

These interior community spaces connect to a large outdoor public plaza, where we’ll host neighborhood events and foster meaningful connections among the community and Googlers. There's also six pieces of public art throughout the plaza, and plenty of public seating.

The Mountain View Farmers Market bustles with activity.

To improve how people navigate North Bayshore, we’ve worked with the City of Mountain View to build the first phase of the Charleston Transit Corridor, which will encourage public transit, increase bike and pedestrian safety, and make it easier to get around North Bayshore without a car. As part of the Gradient Canopy project, two transit centers were constructed on Charleston Road, adjacent to the campus. These facilities, along with the planned bus-only lanes on Charleston Road and Shoreline Boulevard, will enhance the transit options in the area.

The Charleston Transit Corridor also features world-class bicycle and pedestrian pathways – including Class IV separated bikeways, also referred to as cycle tracks. Inside the building, we’re encouraging “two wheel” commuting with 780-plus bike parking spaces, along with bike lockers and showers.

A note for readers: This story was originally published in May 2022 and updated in August 2023 to reflect more recent project details.