6/29/2006--Redmond, WA, USA..A Microsoft shuttle bus sits at a crowded interesection near the entrance to the company's headquarters. Over the next three years, Microsoft is spending $1 billion to expand its corporate headquarters by one third ? enough space for up to 12,000 new employees. The addition would likely make the software giant?s headquarters one of the largest in the world.. .Microsoft had planned to expand at a more leisurely pace of 15 to 20 years, but overcrowding in its Redmond headquarters and a heated battle with rivals Yahoo and Google over web supremacy have stepped up the pace. Already, the software giant is building satellite campuses in India and China for new research and engineering teams, and will consolidate its sales staff in a new skyscraper under construction near its Redmond offices.. .But some locals don?t see Microsoft?s expansion as a positive development for an area already struggling to handle the company?s 30,000 employees. Roads are packed and state housing targets have forced cities to accept more new houses than they can handle. Last year, housing prices jumped nearly 20% to a median of $449,000. Although Microsoft has vowed to spend $35 million to improve transportation in Redmond, critics contend it?s not enough and doesn't address the area's aging roads and bridges, some of which are now earthquake hazards...Photograph By Stuart Isett.All photographs ©2006 Stuart Isett.All rights reserved.