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Apple Park employees reportedly smacking into new headquarters’ glass walls

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Corporate transparency gone awry

It’s no secret that few, if any, tech workers possess the feline-like grace and poise of a corps de ballet. Which makes the following understandable: Employees inside the new Apple Park headquarters keep walking into the circular building’s many curved glass walls.

It’s not polite to laugh.

According to Time magazine, some employees, attached to their iPhones, neither sense nor see the see-through walls coming at their noggins.

Surrounding the Cupertino, California-based building are 45-foot tall curved panels of safety glass. Inside are work spaces, dubbed “pods,” also made with a lot of glass. Apple staff are often glued to the iPhones they helped popularize. That’s resulted in repeated cases of distracted employees walking into the panes, according to people familiar with the incidents.

In an effort to curb cranial collisions, unidentified company employees took to placing Post-It notes on glass walls as a way of warning their colleagues. Bad move. The sticky scrapes of paper were were taken down posthaste so as not to interfere with the seamlessness of Lord Norman Foster’s design.

Some staff started to stick Post-It notes on the glass doors to mark their presence. However, the notes were removed because they detracted from the building’s design, the people said. They asked not to be identified discussing anything related to Apple. Another person familiar with the situation said there are other markings to identify the glass.

The company declined to comment on the head-banging reports. It’s also not clear how many workers have had run-ins with the walls.

A sense of openness and clarity is key to the building’s much-hyped design, with glass being one of the structure’s primary materials.

As Alexandra Lange’s review for Curbed points out, “the office building is a circle; the Hilltop Theater, a glass cylinder; the four-story, 440,000 pound glass doors slide noiselessly; a white-tile tunnel takes you to your car. Once you’re inside, nothing should interrupt your progress or disrupt the view. Glass fins protect the glass walls from unsightly streaking.”

Home to an estimated 13,000 employees, Apple Park went through a rigorous entitlements and construction process, costing roughly $5 billion, before opening in 2017.