"It's a lot of money, and Apple's valuation is dropping pretty sharply at the moment," said Silicon Valley tech analyst Rob Enderle.
Enderle says the proposed wheel campus for Apple is actually a tribute to the company's late founder Steve Jobs. When Jobs unveiled the plans for the building in 2006, the cost was slated at $3 billion. Now a recent article by Businessweek states that the cost may balloon to $5 billion.
The site was originally 50 acres but has now spread to encompass the old HP campus buildings and land, taking up 175 acres. Some tech watchers now wonder if the new chief at Apple, Tim Cook, will build it.
"You might call Cook the exact opposite of Steve Jobs, so I have my doubts whether we'll actually even see this building built," Enderle said. "But you're right, this is Steve Jobs' dream and this is probably going to be his physical legacy."
Others want to see this gleaming four story structure with one of a kind glass from Germany and rare wood furnishings go up as soon as possible. Michael Miller, executive director with the Santa Clara Builders Exchange says the jobs created would be a boon to Silicon Valley's construction industry.
"And the city of Cupertino would benefit as well, not only tax revenue, but people being there and keeping the jobs close to home," Miller said.
The campus has already been delayed a year from its proposed 2015 opening. Businessweek speculated that might be due to subcontractors being busy elsewhere, like finishing the 49er's stadium in Santa Clara.
Miller says there are more than 23,000 unemployed construction workers ready to get to work. The question remains, is $5 billion an exorbitant price for a building, no matter whose dream it is?
"Apple has lost about one third of its value in the last few months, so yeah they're probably less excited about this building at the moment," Enderle said.
We tried contacting Apple for comment but no one returned our calls or email.