Today, Google confirmed that it is investing an additional $1 billion in massive Iowa data centers into which it has already put $1.5 billion. And now VentureBeat has obtained video of the massive project.
The so-called “Council Bluffs” project, which began in 2009, is still under construction. Google is said to be asking the state of Iowa for $19.8 million in new tax incentives for the project, according to the Des Moines Register.
Google told VentureBeat that:
In new video footage we’re sharing, you can see for the first time what our two Council Bluffs data center facilities look like on the inside and from the air — that’s hundreds of thousands of square feet of computing power to deliver your most important search results and your favorite videos, the instant you want them. It’s all managed by more than 300 employees and contractors hard at work across the two campuses.
Google’s data centers are some of the most efficient in the world, using 50 percent less energy than the typical data center. Google is the first major Internet services company to gain external certification of the high environmental, workplace safety, and energy management standards of its data centers. And as always, one of our highest priorities when building a new facility is finding renewable energy sources to power it. For Council Bluffs, we’ve secured 407 [megawatts] of wind power from local utility MidAmerican Energy and 114 MW of wind power from a facility in Story County, Iowa. Separately, we’ve invested $75 million in a 50 MW wind farm in Greene County, north of Des Moines.
Data centers like these are used by Google to serve search results, videos, Google Apps, and much more. It has data center facilities scattered throughout the United States, Asia, Europe, and South America.
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.