CUPERTINO – Apple Park in Cupertino, Apple’s new “spaceship” campus, tops the list of the most expensive buildings in the United States.
With an estimated $5 billion price tag for construction, Apple Park tops a U.S. list of priciest buildings that includes six casinos, a Manhattan skyscraper and a baseball stadium.
“Apple Park is our Pentagon building; it’s got that kind of a footprint,” said Mark Ritchie, president of San Jose-based Ritchie Commercial Real Estate.
The new Apple Park complex seems destined to be forever intertwined with Apple’s history and the life of the company’s co-founder, the late Steve Jobs, said Chad Leiker, a first vice president with Kidder Mathews, a commercial realty firm.
“This new campus was designed with the intent of becoming an icon to Steve Jobs, and it will be an icon for the entire company,” Leiker said.
All told, eight buildings in the United States are among the 25 most expensive buildings in the world.
Ranked by their construction costs, these structures join the $5 billion Apple Park on the list of most expensive U.S. buildings, according to company information, regulatory filings and estimates in published reports:
The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, costing $4.24 billion; One World Trade Center, also known as Freedom Tower, in Manhattan, costing $3.92 billion; Wynn Resort in Las Vegas, $3.28 billion; Bellagio resort in Las Vegas, $2.33 billion; The Palazzo, Las Vegas, $2.06 billion; Trump Taj Mahal in Atlantic City, New Jersey, with a construction expense of $2 billion; and Yankee Stadium in New York City’s Bronx borough, at $1.66 billion, just a little more than the $1.3 billion estimated cost for Santa Clara’s Levi’s Stadium. All building costs are adjusted for inflation, to reflect the construction cost in today’s dollars.
Some of those buildings were touted as the nation’s No. 1 most expensive to build when they were completed. They included the Freedom Tower, built on the site of the World Trade Center, where the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in 2001 brought down the twin towers.
Now, Apple Park appears to be in that same exclusive club, ranked as the nation’s most costly building, based on the $5 billion construction-cost estimate provided to this news organization by the Santa Clara County Assessor’s Office.
At 200 feet high, Yankee Stadium is the shortest of the nation’s most expensive buildings. Apple Park is the second-shortest, standing 238 feet tall.
Worldwide, the top three most expensive buildings include a mega-hotel in the Middle East, two nuclear reactors in Europe and a resort in southeast Asia.
The Abraj al Bait hotel and residential complex that looms over the Mecca pilgrimage site in Saudi Arabia, cost an estimated $15.49 billion; the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor, a Tokamak reactor being built in France, is estimated to cost $14.25 billion; and the Olkiluoto Nuclear Power Plant, located on an island off western Finland, cost $9.22 billion.
About seven Yankee Stadiums could fit on Apple Park’s grounds, which cover 175 acres.
“I would be surprised if there will ever be any intention or effort on the part of Apple to get rid of Apple Park,” Leiker said. “It will always be part of Apple’s long history.”
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