Apple’s newest office building is now under construction. But it’s not the spaceship, and in fact, it’s not even in Cupertino.

This new office, the Mercury reports, is a few exits up the 280 in Santa Clara, just a few miles from Intel’s headquarters.

Apple’s signature headquarters — which we just recently got a sneak peek at — have been delayed until 2016. Since that’s the case, Apple has been forced to pick up extra office space in Sunnyvale and other locations around Silicon Valley … not to mention offices for sales, accounting, and support personnel in Austin, Texas.

The new Apple offices will comprise two six-story buildings, the Merc reports, and will house as many as 1,200 workers.

With Apple’s massive commercial success over the last decade has come a concurrent increase in headcount. In 2002, Apple employed just 10,000 people. Today, Apple employees number at least 50,000 in the U.S. alone. A significant number of those are retail employees, but about half are not. That’s a big workforce to house, and that’s why Apple has been on such an aggressive real estate buying spree.

While some of the properties Apple is leasing are likely temporary locations until the new headquarters is built, the new Santa Clara offices are being built to suit. Most companies — and most people — don’t do that unless they’re planning to be there for a significant period of time … perhaps well past 2016.

One can only hope that the massive spaceship office is not one more piece of evidence in the Silicon Valley edifice complex theory.

photo credit: Akbar Sim via photopin cc