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Updated at 9:40 a.m. Pacific with Google’s response.
Google is investing an additional billion dollars in a data center that could be Iowa’s biggest economic development project. The new money brings Google’s total investment in the project to $2.5 billion.
According to the Des Moines Register, Google is expected to ask Iowa state officials on Friday for more money for the so-called Council Bluffs project. The Register cited a report from the Iowa Economic Development Authority:
Google first came to Iowa in 2007 with plans to build the multimillion-dollar data center in Council Bluffs. The company had plans to invest about $1.5 billion at the 1,000-acre site, according to past Register reports.
Asked about the investment by VentureBeat, Google said:
Every time you send an email or search for a nearby restaurant, the internet grows – and our data centers grow too. We have to stay ahead of our users, so they can keep doing what they want to do online. That’s why we’re announcing today that we’re committed to investing an additional $1 billion in our Council Bluffs data center facilities through 2019 (subject to Council approval), bringing our total investment to $2.5 billion. This expansion in Iowa is part of the gradual process of growing capacity for the future and will allow Google to better serve its users around the world.
The Register also said that Iowa has already given Google $16.8 million in tax incentives for the data center project and that the search giant is expected to ask for $19.8 million more in sales and use-tax refunds. In return, the company would have to create as many as 70 new jobs in the area if the new funding is approved.
The Council Bluffs project is on the agenda for Friday’s meeting of the Iowa Economic Development Authority.
For Google to invest ten-figure amounts in data centers isn’t surprising, of course. In 2014, according to GigaOm, the company spent as much as $11 billion on “real estate purchases, production equipment, and data center construction.”
And the Register wrote that data center construction in Iowa is on the rise. Microsoft is currently building two billion-dollar data centers in the area, the newspaper reported, and Facebook also has a center under construction there.
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