Apple confirms billion dollar data centre project in Iowa
Fri 25 Aug 2017
Apple has confirmed its next data centre site will be built in Iowa, costing $1.375 billion (approx. £1.07 billion), with the company receiving $207.8 million in incentives from the state.
The California-based giant will buy 2000 acres of land in Waukee, around 20 miles west of the state capital of Des Moines, to build two data centres.
Through the project, Apple is looking to ‘better serve North American users of iMessage, Siri, the App Store and other Apple services.’ As with all Apple data centres, the new build will run entirely on renewable energy, as part of Apple’s policy on using only green energy across its business.
The majority of the $1.375 billion cost will go towards construction, with $620 million being spent on the build. The company also plans to spend $600 million on IT equipment for the data centre.
Apple CEO, Tim Cook, said: ‘Apple is responsible for 2 million jobs in all 50 states and we’re proud today’s investment will add to the more than 10,000 jobs we already support across Iowa, providing even more economic opportunity for the community.’
Cook spoke alongside Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds, where he promised that the facility would create hundreds of jobs for Iowans, in areas such as construction and engineering.
Reynolds praised the company and its ethos, saying: ‘We’re honoured Apple is choosing Iowa for the site of its most technologically advanced data centre to date.
‘Apple’s commitment to innovation and renewable energy leadership mirrors our own. This investment in our state is vital as we continue to develop as a technology hub and grow our workforce.’
Most of the subsidies provided by the state of Iowa come in the form of a planned $188.2 million property tax abatement of 71% over 20 years provided by the city of Waukee, according to economic development officials.
Tech developments are common in Midwestern states thanks to subsidies of this kind. In Wisconsin, Foxconn, the trading name of Hon Hai Precision Industry Co Ltd, is seeking $3 billion in subsidies for a $10 billion LCD panel plant. This was recently approved by a small margin in Wisconsin’s state assembly.
The new build means Apple will now have data centres in California, Nevada, Oregon, and North Carolina. Iowa plays host to data centres owned by Facebook, Alphabet, and Microsoft.