Apple has found great success with its branded Apple Stores, expanding them to 11 international markets outside the US, but the company is now looking back home for the next generation of its retail experience. The San Jose Mercury News reports that Apple has been granted planning permission to commence construction on what it describes as a "new prototype" Apple Store on 340 University Avenue in Palo Alto. That's only a block away from the company's current store at 451 University Avenue, which is expected to close down after the new one is opened.

Planning documents reveal Apple's intention is to have a glass facade and roof on the eventual two-storey building, with steel and stone also factoring heavily into the design. A basement and mezzanine will provide room for storage and offices, though how exactly the new store experience will differ from the old is not yet known. Apple spokeswoman Amy Bessette told the Mercury News that the company is "planning a beautiful new store ... building on everything we've learned from our customers in Palo Alto and around the world."

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