Google is stepping up to address Silicon Valley’s growing housing crisis.
The tech giant has signed a deal with modular-home startup Factory OS to build 300 apartment units in Silicon Valley to serve as temporary housing for Google employees, The Wall Street Journal is reporting. The deal is valued at $25 million to $30 million.
Modular homes are gaining traction in the construction industry. Rather than build a home or apartment unit from scratch, modular home companies assemble parts of buildings in a factory and then ship those pieces to their final destination. They are designed to reduce construction costs, although getting regulatory approval to build them can be slow in states like California.
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Google’s efforts come amid what some real estate experts describe as a housing crisis in Silicon Valley. The tech hub has attracted people from around the world, but the finite amount of space and limited appetite for new construction have sent housing prices soaring.
That has left some companies, including Google and Facebook, to eye ways to expand housing. Facebook (FB), for instance, plans to build 1,500 housing units in Menlo Park, Calif., though it’s unknown when that project might be completed.
Google has not yet said when it will begin work on its modular apartment units.