Fremont Abandons Effort to Enshrine 1984 Mac Factory

The City of Fremont has abandoned an effort to have the original, state-of-the-art factory that made the first Macs listed as a place of historic significance. The City Council wanted the building registered as such a place after the death of Apple cofounder Steve Jobs in 2011, but found out that the building isn't old enough to meet federal criteria for a historic designation.

Apple Fremont Factory

Inside Apple's Fremont Factory from an Apple Promotional Video

That criteria specifies that buildings be at least 50 years old, but Apple's facility was built just 30 years ago. The City Council had spent some US$45,000 in its effort to get the building listed before being deciding it wouldn't be able to meet its objective.

Steve Jobs was very proud of the factory, and it got talked about quite a bit in Walter Isaacson's biography of the tech icon. It featured state-of-the-art automation designed specifically to produce Apple's Macintosh, but production was moved to other Apple facilities after just two years. The facility continued to produce laser printers and other Apple products until it was shut down in 1992.

"Last year, when we celebrated Steve Jobs Day here in Fremont, there was a sense that a global story was being told and somehow we were not at the table telling our story as effectively as we could," Vice Mayor Anu Natarajan told The San Jose Mercury News.

He added, "Maybe we don't go down the historic path but we should find a way to mark this and celebrate that presence."

The newspaper also noted that Fremont was hoping to promote its role in the history of Silicon Valley, a role that is sometimes overlooked compared to other Bay Area cities like Cupertino, San Jose, Mountain View, Palo Alto, and even San Francisco.

Below is an Apple promotional video posted to YouTube by French Mac site MacGeneration. It appears to be a recruiting tool showing Apple products being made in the factory back in the glorious 1980s.