When someone talks about places like Wall Street and the Silicon Valley, we often never stop and wonder how they came into being. Yet like all highly developed areas, they didn’t just spring up fully ready for business. In the case of the Silicon Valley, the area was actually first covered by fruit orchards back in the late 1950s and early 1960s.
That type of land usage might have continued well into the future if two rather prescient real estate developers named John Arrillaga, Sr., and Richard Peery hadn’t come along. According to an article featured in Fortune magazine’s July 21, 2014 issue, those two visionaries turned that farmland into “thousands of acres of low-slung office parks and campuses that have come to house Intel, HP, Apple, Google, and more.”
In fact, these two entrepreneurs (their company is known as Perry Arrillaga) have “erected more than 12 million square feet of office space and sold or leased tens of billions of dollars in property.”
As a result of all of this work, both men have become billionaires. They claim to have started with only about $2,000 of their own cash, along with financing help from others.
Here’s some added information about what’s going on in this same area today, and what’s likely to take place there in the future.
Additional Interesting Facts/Questions about the Development of the Silicon Valley
- The new unknown tenant of San Jose’s “largest-ever construction project.” Although San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed is among the few who know the name of this company, few others are certain which business is moving into the two million square feet of office space “that hugs Highway 101 right next to the San Jose Mineta Airport.” However, the project is being run by Peery Arrillaga, which “historically is one of Apple’s favorite building partners” -- and that company has signaled it’s planning on major growth and hiring in the near future. In fact, Apple is so determined to grow that the tech giant is planning to increase its “headcount by 46% in two years, bringing the workforce to over 23,000 total;”
- Other companies seeking to move or find new space. Apart from Apple, others currently demanding more office space in and around the Silicon Valley include Google and LinkedIn. In the past, Oracle and Cisco made similar requests, according to the Fortune magazine article referenced above;
- What’s been going on at Stanford? The Fortune article also indicates that Arrillaga’s recent “$100 million rebuild of Stanford Stadium took just 10 months” because the company used three separate crews that worked 24 hours a day. Arrillaga keeps doing all he can for his beloved alma mater.
Constant growth and what Fortune calls the Silicon Valley’s “ever-escalating prices” are surely the most likely factors to remain in play in this area for decades to come. In fact, when John Arrillaga, Sr., was recently asked if he would invest first in this same place again if he could start over, he quickly noted that the Bay Area was always the best area to do his type of work -- especially due to the early presence of so many high-tech players in what’s now called the Silicon Valley.
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