Google Canada's got some new digs.
As of last month, Google Canada's Toronto office moved from its rather inauspicious space in the Dundas Square Cineplex building to 89,000 square feet on five floors of a stately Peter Dickinson tower on Richmond Street West, just behind the opera house.
There have for years been stories out of Mountain View, California of Google's wonderful HQ with its over-the-top amenities, and now, it seems, Google Canada's decided it worth following suit.
I took a tour of the place last week with Aaron Brindle, Google Canada's communications manager. It's not quite finished yet— there are still some cartographically themed graphics to go into some stairwells, and one floor is still entirely unoccupied, though it's fully furnished.
But they do have a DJ room. And a jam room, where employees can use the full complement of instruments and gear to play and even record. Also, there's food—lots of it.
"I don't think any employee is ever more than 150 feet away from food," Brindle said. Walking down the hallways you run into jars of candy, freezers of ice cream, the occasional mini-kitchen, all in addition to the main dining room, where meals prepared by Google's chef are served five days a week.
It's almost as if Google wanted people to have something to write about when they opened.
There are also more obviously productive spaces, like the 42 conference, phone or "huddle" rooms sprinkled about the place.
Carpets are made from salvaged fishnets, and the walls are lined with reclaimed wood, all of which was designed and executed by Google in consultation with HOK.
Writer: Bert Archer
Source: Aaron Brindle
This story originally appeared in Yonge Street on Dec. 5, 2012.