Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Facebook behind secret $1bn Virginia data centre project


World’s largest social media platform attracted by renewable energy sources, but also given $19m in tax exemptions.

Facebook is to invest $1bn into Virginia in the construction of a data centre and solar facilities to power up its more than two billion users’ needs.

The company will put forward $750m for the construction of the data centre with the remaining $250m lined up to be used in the setup of several solar facilities that will be used to power the data centre, according to Terry McAuliffe, Virginia’s Governor.

The project is expected to generate 100 full-time jobs in the Henrico County where the facilities will be built.

The hyperscale data centre project had been discussed by local authorities in mid-September as reported here, however, no names were put forward as in who would be the name behind the so called ‘Project Echo’.

The complex at White Oak Technology Park measures 2.5m sqf, however, Facebook plans to build a facility spanning across ‘only’ 970,000 sqf.

The social media company has also been given a $19m state tax exemption clearing through to 2035, the Virginia Economic Development Partnership said.

Governor McAuliff said: “Working with companies like Facebook and many others, we are advancing Virginia’s position as a global leader in the technology economy.”

In a statement, Facebook’s director of data centre strategy Rachel Peterson, said: “One of the many important factors in our search for a new data centre location is being able to source clean and renewable energy.

“We also look for great partnerships within the local community, robust infrastructure and a strong pool of local talent.”