Microsoft unveils big Mountain View campus plans

Microsoft unveiled plans Tuesday for a major reconstruction and upgrade of its main Silicon Valley campus in Mountain View, which will modernize the site and add water-saving, green features.  The unveiling comes as Bay Area tech companies are considering new construction, upgrading existing campuses — or in Apple’s case, settling into newly built facilities — to create modern, attractive workplaces for employees.

“This project represents a significant investment in our more than 2,000 employees in the San Francisco Bay Area and our commitment to creating the best employee experience in the industry,” Kevin Scott, Microsoft’s chief technology officer, wrote in a blog post Tuesday.

Redmond, Washington-based Microsoft estimated it will take two years to build the revamped, 643,000-square-foot Mountain View complex, which should be ready to occupy in December 2019.

Read the full article at East Bay Times

Home prices nearly doubled in this surprising California city

As home prices skyrocket across the state, there’s one California city where they’ve shot up more than anywhere else in the U.S. — nearly doubling in the past five years. No, it’s not San Francisco, San Jose or Oakland. It’s not even in the Bay Area.

It’s Stockton, the Central Valley community twice dubbed America’s “most miserable” city by Forbes Magazine because of its high rates of housing foreclosures, unemployment and violent crime.

The jump in home prices in Stockton and neighboring Lodi — up about 92 percent over the past five years — is dramatic evidence of the ripple effects of the Bay Area’s tight housing market and the increasingly out-of-reach cost of living here. As people flee San Francisco and Silicon Valley in search of cheaper housing — heading to places like Stockton, Oakland and Sacramento — prices in those second-tier markets are rising.

Read more from Mercury News

What’s going on with 6×6, the vacant Market Street mall?

Ballyhooed as the “largest retail development in San Francisco” since the Westfield Centre, the 6×6 center, located at 900 Market between Sixth and Fifth Streets, anticipated becoming a major competitor in the retail scene.

Today the 250,000-square-foot, glass-and-steel behemoth remains vacant, with neither retail nor dining in sight, and only an underground parking structure as its sole revenue generator.

What happened?

Read the full article from Curbed SF

How will the Senate-approved tax bill offer a big break for real estate developers?

After weeks of speculation, President Donald Trump’s tax reform bill passed the Senate 51-49 around 2 a.m. Saturday.  The bill, crafted to encourage more investment by U.S. companies and to boost the country’s economic growth, is particularly generous when it comes to commercial real estate developers.

The final version of the nearly 500-page tax bill includes last-minute changes such as a larger tax break for pass-through entities, common among real estate developers. The legislation offers a 23% tax deduction for businesses set up as a partnership or entity with a tax burden that transfers to an individual; this deduction used to sit at 17.4%.

Much remains unknown about the Senate’s bill, as many changes were scribbled onto the bill at the last minute. TBO reports if left as is, the bill could add $1 trillion to the nation’s deficit over the next several decades.

Read the full article from Bisnow