America Center II

Silicon Valley spec office lands anchor tenant, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, 4x faster than competitors


  • View Dynamic Glass key to differentiating building in competitive real estate market
  • HPE selected America Center II for its new headquarters with 1,000 employees
  • 11 months faster lease up is worth $8M
  • Iconic Bay views without obstructive blinds or shades
  • 5 more hours daylight per day with View Dynamic Glass compared to shades
  • 9.5% annual energy savings compared to traditional dual pane

USAA Real Estate, Teacher Retirement System of Texas, and their development partner, Steelwave, identified a unique opportunity to develop America Center Phase II, one of the last large parcels available in the North San Jose area of Silicon Valley. The 13-acre campus is right off the Highway 101/237 corridor and on the edge of a 30-acre open space preserve that forms the very south end of the San Francisco Bay.

The competition for top tenants is fierce among new and recently completed buildings in Silicon Valley. The big tech companies such as Facebook, Google and Amazon, are taking millions of square feet, pushing demand east and south from Mountain View and Palo Alto to Sunnyvale, San Jose and Santa Clara. The tech companies also want space that is ready to fit out and don’t want to wait for lengthy construction timelines. In response, developers are constructing large buildings entirely on spec to be ready for when the next big company is ready to expand. But they face the risk of having buildings sit empty for extended periods of time, so competition for tenants is fierce. It is no longer enough to offer modern open floor plans and to achieve a LEED certification. The buildings have to help companies compete for the best engineers by providing high end amenities and improved environments for people.

Building on the success of the first Phase of America Center, USAA Real Estate, Teacher Retirement System, and Steelwave’s vision for Phase II is to stand out to companies by providing state-of-the-art technology and amenities that facilitate employee attraction, engagement and wellness, such as View Dynamic Glass. The buildings also feature multiple fiber connections, a roof deck with putting green, 16,000-square-foot fitness center/café as well as access to jogging and bike trails in the adjacent nature preserve, an outdoor bar and entertainment center, 36 electric vehicle charging stations, and a dedicated Caltrain shuttle.

View Dynamic Glass saves energy and operating expenses, affording building occupants an enhanced work place environment with unobstructed views and access to natural daylight. We are excited to prove this concept, and to potentially implement View Dynamic Glass on future projects.

Dirk Mosis
Executive Managing Director, USAA Real Estate
America Center, San Jose

The America Center project is designed to be a leading state of the art campus. Installing View Dynamic Glass has been key in enabling us to realize that goal by providing a technology that improves occupant comfort, wellness, and productivity. Energy efficiency was also a major driver, and View helped the project reach ambitious sustainability targets resulting in a LEED Gold level pre-certification.

Steve Dunn
Senior Managing Director, Steelwave
America Center, Dynamic Glass

While the site has dramatic views of the San Francisco Bay and surrounding valley, heat gain and glare issues means that occupants would be hot and window shades would be closed on at least one façade 74% of the time. The team decided to choose View Dynamic Glass to take advantage of the location in a more meaningful way, allowing occupants to see nature all the time without uncomfortable heat and glare.

America Center Phase II was leasing at the same time as five other properties nearby, which were all constructed within two years of each other and offered the same core amenities - dining, fitness, outdoor space, and good freeway visibility. Each offered at least one whole building in the 170,000-300,000 SF range and was asking between $35-50 rent, with America Center II falling right in the middle. After touring the competitors, Hewlett Packard selected America Center II because it would provide a better employee experience and align with the company’s vision to create technology that makes life better for everyone.

After touring the competitors, Hewlett Packard Enterprise selected America Center II for its headquarters, and will move 1,000 employees there. America Center landed its anchor tenant in only four months, compared to the average of 15 months for competitors. The faster lease up is worth $8M to Steelwave at $40 market rent.

Steelwave also achieved design and construction benefits as a result of View Dynamic Glass. In order for the original building to meet California’s stringent Title 24 Energy Code, the window area would have had to be reduced, decreasing its market appeal, or Steelwave would have had to change the HVAC to a Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) system, an additional $600,000 cost. By using View Dynamic Glass instead of static glass, the buildings will save 150,000 kWh per year, a 9.5% energy reduction. The buildings are projected to achieve an 99 Energy Star Score based on the EPA’s Target Finder.

Hewlett Packard Enterprise is an American multinational information technology company headquartered in Palo Alto, California. USAA Real Estate was founded in 1982 as the real estate investment arm of USAA, with more than $18 billion in assets under management. The Teacher Retirement System of Texas is the largest public retirement system in Texas, serving more than 1.5 million members, and with $134 billion in assets under management. Steelwave is a full-service real estate company and investment management firm that has acquired, developed or managed over $10.7 billion of multifamily, industrial and office product across the Western United States in the past 45 years.

Project Specs

Construction Team

  • Architect:
    LARGE Architecture
  • General contractor:
    Lusardi Construction Company
  • Glazier:
    Walters & Wolf
  • MEP:
    Southland Engineering


  • Project type:
    New Construction
  • Glass sq ft:
  • System type:
    Walters and Wolf All Wall Unitized System

IGU makeup

  • Overall thickness:
  • Outboard lite:
    6mm tempered clear with EC on surface
  • Spacer:
    1/2" black warm edge spacer
  • Inboard lite:
    6mm tempered Solarblue

America Center II

  • Developer:
  • Investment partner:
    USAA Real Estate
  • Specifications:
    2 buildings, 6 stories, 457,000 RSF
  • LEED certification:
    LEED Core & Shell - Gold (anticipated)