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With $1 billion invested in its new North American campus, Toyota opens its doors

Carlos Soria strides through the newly completed two-story atrium of Toyota North America's new 100-acre corporate campus in Plano's Legacy West — the corporate home he helped build to bring the Japanese automaker's North American employees under one roof on the Texas prairie.

By this weekend, Soria, a senior manager of real estate and facilities, will join about 2,000 other Toyota North America team members on the 100-acre, 2.1 million-square-foot campus it expects to operate for the next 60 years. Show Full Story

Jake Dean.

Toyota's new $1 billion corporate campus (which also includes relocation costs) is officially open for business in Plano.

Jake Dean

A large terrace with sweeping view of the campus sits on top of the main lobby.

Jake Dean

A large central courtyard serves as crossroads for the company's social and business functions - including dining, fitness, and conferencing facilities.

Jake Dean

A view of the main skylight from the lobby.

Jake Dean

Views from the terrace includes a green belt that wraps around other corporate campuses that share the same zip code.

Jake Dean

About 1,220 tons of Texas limestone, which is approximately the weight of 340 Texas-Built Tundras, is part of the campus.

Jake Dean

About 4,000 Toyota North America employees will fill the campus by the end of the year. Roughly half of those have already moved into the campus.

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A meeting room with privacy glass.

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A work café on the second floor

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Huge skylights add to the energy efficiency designed to meet LEED Platinum Standards. They also bring in natural light for employees.

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A second-floor work area looks out onto a native North Texas landscape including one of the 84 saved of relocated trees.

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A sculpture done with red and white Match-Box Prius vehicles serves as a background to a small conference area.

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Inflated air bags found in Toyota vehicles serve as an art piece above the sitting area.

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A two-story rock climbing gym sits adjacent to the onsite fitness center.

Jake Dean

Several areas of the $1billion project are still under construction.

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Toyota's dining rooms look out onto the central courtyard.

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There are 12 eateries throughout the 100-acre corporate campus.

Jake Dean

The company will have 4,000 Toyota North America employees on its campus, which has enough space to accommodate 6,500 people.

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Toyota's electric one-seater, i-ROAD made an appearance on campus Thursday.

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One of the dining rooms has a living wall with numerous living plants along its face.

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Toyota employees walking the colorful, natural lights filled hallways.

The $1 billion investment into developing the new campus and relocating employees to Plano is part of a larger strategy by Toyota North America, a subsidiary of Toyota Motor Corp. (NYSE: TM), to invest $10 billion in Toyota's U.S. manufacturing in the next five years.

"With team members from four different companies together in one campus location, we believe this will inspire greater collaboration, innovation, and faster decision making as we turn to and lead the future of mobility, all with an eye on our customers," said CEO Jim Lentz, in a statement.

The $1 billion relocation, along with billions spent to increase the U.S. manufacturing capabilities of Toyota North America, were given praise by President Donald Trump, who wrote a letter to Lentz congratulating him on the new corporate home in Plano.

Toyota North America has 10 manufacturing assembly facilities through the United States, with $23.4 billion of direct investment tied to the automaker's 60 years' operating in the country.

For three years, executives with Toyota North America have been working on the massive consolidation, which will bring thousands of employees from California, Kentucky and New York under one roof in Plano. Construction of the facility began in early 2015.

Soria and other executives in the real estate division led by Doug Beebe began moving 200 to 300 employees into the new corporate campus each week beginning May 15.

With roughly 2,000 employees already in their new flexible workspaces, with sit-stand desks and moveable walls, Soria said the real estate team will move from temporary trailers adjacent to the new campus into its new space within the building aptly named E3 (third building on the east side of the campus).

The majority of the construction is slated to wrap up in October, with team members continuing to funnel into the new Plano campus by the end of the year. In all, Toyota North America will have 4,000 employees working at the campus.

About 3,000 employees relocated with the company from another location in the United States. Toyota North America hired more than 1,000 new team members in North Texas. The automaker has already filled about 75 percent of its open job positions.

The Toyota North America campus will have room to accommodate up to 6,500 employees or people, which will contractors or employees with vendors or suppliers.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott said the new campus is proof of the Lone Star state's continuing economic expansion.

Toyota North America's new campus includes a large central courtyard that is Wi-Fi enabled to encourage employees to work away from their desks with outdoor terraces and a second-floor level patio underneath the grand oculus connecting the east and west buildings at the company's grand entrance.

The 100-acre campus will be about 33 percent powered using solar panels atop the parking garages. The remainder of the power will be purchased from a wind farm.

Employees have 12 eateries to select from on campus (including a fresh sushi restaurant), with a 22,900-square-foot fitness facility with a two-story indoor climbing gym to burn off calories or take a break from work.

The campus also has a conferencing center with a variety of rooms, cafeteria, doctor's office and much more.

The two buildings facing the front of Headquarters Drive (W1 and E1) each have five levels of floor plates totaling 55,000 square feet apiece.

Dallas-based KDC is the developer of the campus. Dallas-based Corgan is the project architect. JLL represented Toyota North America in its real estate search that ended in Plano.

To build the campus, construction workers poured more than 142,500 yards of concrete, installed more than 12 acres of glass and used enough Texas limestone to weigh the equivalent of 340 Toyota Tundra trucks.

This was the biggest real estate project Doug Beebe, Toyota North America's general manager of real estate, said he's ever tackled in his career with the company.

And Beebe's favorite part of the campus? That's something that has yet to be built — and will probably never be developed — about four-acre tract at Legacy Drive and the Sam Rayburn Tollway adjacent to the campus with a natural creek and Texas prairie.

"It's something very few people will see," Beebe told the DBJ. "We are keeping it and hoping to develop a little gathering area for folks to walk from our property into that space at some sort of time. It's not on the books anywhere, but I've been privileged enough to go there and it's a real special place."

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