The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative has doubled the size of its headquarters in downtown Palo Alto. On Thursday, the city's Planning & Community Environment Department issued the philanthropic organization a use-and-occupancy permit to expand its headquarters into the one-story 10,000-square-foot office building at 555 University Ave. adjacent to the approximately 10,000-square-foot office at 435 Tasso St., where Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, a physician, have operated their philanthropy group for the past nine months.
According to a spokesperson, "The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative is leasing additional space as part of our plans to build for the future, and we are committed to working in our community."
The organization would not provide further comment on the expanded space, but according to its website, the Initiative is looking to fill 32 full-time Palo Alto positions in various areas including operations, policy, advocacy, product and technology as well as in its education and science initiatives aimed at accelerating breakthrough research in learning and medicine. Education and technology positions account for more than half the openings.
The new office space coincides with the Palo Alto couple's push to ramp up their philanthropic efforts since launching the Initiative in December 2015. In an open letter to their newborn daughter, Max, the duo pledged 99 percent of their Facebook shares -- worth an estimated $45 billion -- to bring together top thought leaders to "advance human potential and promote equality for all children in the next generation."
The philanthropy is focused on personalized learning, curing disease, connecting people and building strong communities.
In recent months, the couple's charitable giving has funded millions of dollars in grants to various nonprofits, scientists and engineers. The organization recently opened a bio hub in San Francisco where engineers and researchers from Stanford University, University of California, Berkeley, and the University of California, San Francisco, can work together on curing, preventing or managing all diseases over the next decade. And this month, the organization announced a partnership with education-reform group Chiefs for Change.
The Initiative also is preparing to move into a 100,000-square-foot space in downtown Redwood City. The project at 2075 Broadway is scheduled to break ground in June.