Facebook to “Add” Bellevue to Its Friend List

Bellevue Mary Pong,

Bellevue is home to many large tech companies and they could be adding one more to their collection. According to anonymous sources, seeking to protect their business relationships, Facebook is looking to expand on the Eastside and is looking at office space in Bellevue’s Spring District.

A technology industry source and two commercial real estate brokers both stated that the company viewed the office space and is now considering signing the lease.

Wright Runstad President and Spring District developer Greg Johnson has yet to provide more information on the matter. The Broderick Group, a Bellevue-based commercial real estate company, lists the office space in question but declined to comment.

We prefer not to comment on speculation,” Jamil Walker, a spokesman for Facebook, wrote in an email.

Bellevue’s Spring District development neighborhood located east of downtown Bellevue currently sits at 36 acres but will grow to include 5.3 million square feet of office, residential, and retail space. The website for the project states that there will be 482,680 square feet of office space available by 2020.

By January 2020, the 11-floor Block 16 building will have 328,873 square feet available for lease which also includes 12,807 square feet of retail space. Then in 2021, the nine-floor Block 24 building will become available with 166,614 square feet.

The Global Innovation Exchange, a program created by the University of Washington and China’s Tsinghua University for technology graduates, is already located in the Spring District. The popular outdoor company Recreational Equipment Inc. (REI) is also planning to set up its headquarters in the Spring District in 2020 which will be staffed by 1,400 employees.

Facebook’s 150,000-square-foot office opened in March on Westlake Avenue in Seattle’s South Lake Union neighborhood and in December of 2016, a lease was signed for two six-story buildings in South Lake Union’s Arbor Blocks project. Those are set to open this year.

Once that happens Facebook will be the neighborhood’s second-largest office tenant, with Amazon.com being the first. The social media company also holds 700,000 square feet in Redmond where the Oculus virtual reality headset team works. All the growth is pressuring General Electric Co., a nearby tenant, to move to a new office.

Earlier this year Facebook was predicted to grow to 1 million square feet in Redmond by the Broderick Group.

Right now, there is no mention of which Facebook team will lease in the Spring District, or how much space they will need, or the buildings they will occupy.

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