Local officials in Sioux City, Iowa have green-lighted a proposal to redevelop a historic downtown building as a data center. On Monday the city council approved $800,000 in city funds to help convert the Badgerow Building into a data center, downsizing the developer’s request for up to $2 million in assistance. Developer Bruce DeBolt of San Diego-based Mako One Corp. wants to invest $10 million to overhaul the Badgerow Building, a vacant 12-story historic building in Sioux City, as a mixed-use facility featuring data centers on three floors.
DeBolt mentioned a currency play as a factor in his strategy for the facility, saying he will look for companies in Europe and Asia who are looking to expand in the United States given the low status of the dollar in foreign markets. But the developer emphasized that “these are made-in-America, stay-in-America jobs.”
The editorial page of the Sioux City Journal had expressed support for the project, citing the need for the city to remain competitive with Council Bluffs, Iowa, which last year attracted a $600 million Google data center.
The Badgerow property was built in 1933 and declared unfit for occupancy by the city three years ago. Mako acquired the site for $450,000 earlier this year and has been working on repairs.