US & Canada

Google told to move barge because of wrong permits

A Google barge was seen at Treasure Island in San Francisco, California, on 28 October 2013 Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Google has been told it can move the San Francisco barge to a nearby construction facility

Google has been ordered to move a huge barge it moored off San Francisco Bay, due to improper permits.

The San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission determined the documentation was not in order.

Google can move the barge to a nearby fully permitted construction facility, a commission official said.

The appearance of the barge and a similar one off the US East Coast last year baffled many and Google has said little about the structures.

The internet search giant issued a statement last November, saying: "Although it's still early days and things may change, we're exploring using the barge as an interactive space where people can learn about new technology." The other vessel is off the coast of Portland, Maine.

On Monday, San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission executive director Larry Goldzband told the BBC the West Coast-based barge, which contains a four-storey building, would need to be relocated.

He said that the Treasure Island Development Authority, which approved the project, could face fines as a result. He said that Google was not facing fines.

It is said to be the second time the West Coast-based Google barge has faced permitting problems.

Last year work was reportedly halted after the US Coast Guard said additional permits were required.

Image copyright AP
Image caption Google has another four-storey structure on a barge in Portland, Maine

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