August 23rd, 2012


Company Town Thursday

Has Intel ever wanted to build a company town?

Company towns kind of intrigue me, and today I saw part (just a part) of Intel's Hillsboro complex, and that question's now on my mind. I rode a Max train out to the Hawthorn Farm stop, walked up to Cornell and then to Shute, and did a giant, multi-mile U around where a few of the main "fabs" (fabrication factories for chips) are. Shute led to Evergreen Parkway led to 229th, and then to a Marriott where I got directions to the nearest Max station to there (Orenco Station), which is good because otherwise I would've missed the Max train I wanted. Here's to asking for directions!

I got thinking about Intel partly because the construction company I used to work for has built several fabs out there. I wound up never running errands out to the site, though I had some communication with it; my boss had a meeting out there one time during my time, so I did some phone calling and that was it. Only ever saw the construction in photos. So I've finally seen some of the work. Though I missed the world's largest portable crane, which was at the site a year ago.

OK, the place exists. I wonder if I know anyone who's worked at that campus. I was exceedingly unlikely to run into anybody I knew, whether a construction company worker or an Intel employee (spoiler: I didn't, but wouldn't it have been kind of awesome if I had?), but I satisfied my curiosity. From a distance; I was always on public right-of-way and didn't have a camera. I didn't even walk onto grass to get near blackberry bushes on the north side of campus.

(At one point I passed a pond and said to myself, "That's the way Navy Seals would infiltrate." Was I thinking Intel would someday secede or something? Company nation! Science fiction premise alert...)

I hope I didn't piss off Intel security. I almost certainly didn't do so, unless they were watching the campus border really hard. I doubt I blocked anything they did want to see, either.

Anyway, nice to see you, Intel! Also, good day for a walk, and it means I should sleep niiiiiiiiiiicely tonight.

P.S. Intel probably has people who walk the whole loop (Shute-Evergreen-229th-Butler) that I just did as a U (no Butler), and walk that loop as a matter of course. Intel does tend to hire ambitious people.