Microsoft Corp. announced it will accelerate campus development plans and spend $1 billion over the next three years to expand its Redmond campus by one-third its current size. Roughly half of the development agreement, approved by the city of Redmond in May 2005 to expand Microsoft's Redmond campus over the next 15-20 years, will now be fulfilled by 2009, making the company's Redmond campus one of the largest corporate campuses in the world.

A total of 14 buildings will be added to the campus. Seven buildings will be new and seven have been purchased. Coupled with leased spaces, they will provide the capacity to house approximately 12,000 people based on the current conceptual layout. By June 2009, 3.1 million additional square feet will be available.

Expanding the work space at its Redmond headquarters campus has become critical as Microsoft rapidly grows in every one of its major marketplaces: games, entertainment, search, mobile and business applications.

Microsoft executives and city of Redmond Mayor Rosemarie Ives joined Washington state Governor Chris Gregoire and King County Executive Ron Sims at the site of Building 99 on Microsoft's west campus. Building 99 is the first of seven brand-new buildings that will be constructed as part of the expansion.

"Microsoft's decision to continue to invest in its world headquarters in Redmond is a vote of confidence in the city of Redmond and the state of Washington," Ives said. "It also underscores the need for the region and the state to continue to improve the transportation infrastructure in the 520 corridor to ensure a high quality of life for citizens who choose to live and work in east King County."

"Microsoft is a great example of how global success leads to local growth," Gregoire said. "Their recent success is just part of Washington's economic success right now. Through their participation in the Global Competitiveness Council, they are helping all Washington businesses develop strategies to compete in the global marketplace."

"On behalf of all the residents of King County, I want to thank Microsoft for reiterating its commitment to this region," Sims said. "It was happy chance that the founders of Microsoft were from this area, but we cannot leave it to chance that this world leader in computer technology stays here. King County and its cities must continue to complement our beautiful natural resources with infrastructure and transportation solutions that deliver a quality of life and a business environment that help our major employers stay here."

Over the next three to five years, Microsoft will dedicate $35 million to significant transportation and infrastructure improvements in Redmond including improvements to streets, sewers, storm sewers and an overpass over SR520. The overpass will connect the east and west sides of the campus, allowing for easier traffic flow on campus and the surrounding communities.

Almost half of Microsoft's worldwide employees work in the Puget Sound area. The company employs over 30,000 workers in the region and another 33,000 globally. In this fiscal year, the company expects to add approximately 4,000 to 5,000 net employees to its work force. It expects approximately 40 percent of the net additions will be in the U.S., and of those a vast majority will be in the Puget Sound region.

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