eBay Picks Utah for $334 Million Data Center

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Online auction site eBay has chosen a suburb of Salt Lake City as the site for a $334 million data center project. The company said yesterday that it has purchased land in South Jordan, Utah in the Daybreak Commerce Park, not far from where Oracle Corp. (ORCL) is building a huge data center.

The two projects have raised the profile of Utah as a destination for large data centers. As was the case with Oracle, eBay will take advantage of generous incentives from the local government. The state Office of Economic Development offered eBay $27.3 million in tax incentives over 10 years to build the facility in Utah, according to the Salt Lake Tribune.

eBay (EBAY) was known to be focusing its data center search on the Southwest, including sites in Phoenix, Arizona and Utah. The facility, which could be as large as 250,000 square feet, would continue a regional expansion that has seen eBay acquire a large data center in Phoenix and expand its facility in Denver. The company is believed to have six data centers, including facilities in San Jose, Sacramento and Austin, Texas.

The data center is expected to create about 50 jobs with wages averaging $49,200 a year, about 50 percent above the Salt Lake County annual median wage. eBay said it chose Utah because it already had a relationship with the state through a call center it operates in the state.

Utah is not known for housing huge data centers, but has become home to a growing number of web hosts and enterprise data centers, including facilities for Center 7, ViaWest, WestHost and TierFour (UVNet) are among the companies that have built or acquired data centers in Utah in the past several years. A 2007 study by the Kauffman Foundation found that Utah led the nation in “economic dynamism” based on a strong concentration of fast-growing technology startups.

eBay last expanded its network in 2006, when it bought the former Switch-X data center in Phoenix for $16.3 million. The company cited the location’s low exposure to natural disasters as an important factor in its selection of the 135,000 square foot building. Utah also has a low probability of earthquakes and other disasters.

About the Author

Rich Miller is the founder and editor at large of Data Center Knowledge, and has been reporting on the data center sector since 2000. He has tracked the growing impact of high-density computing on the power and cooling of data centers, and the resulting push for improved energy efficiency in these facilities.

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6 Comments

  1. GreenLight

    Utah actually has a high probability of earthquakes.

  2. David

    Um... greenlight, no. It doesn't. In fact, there are very few natural disasters at all here in Utah.

  3. geofairy

    GreenLight is right. The Wasatch fault along the east side could create a gelifaction (bowl of jelly) effect similar to the 1985 earthquake that affected Mexico City another basin. The whole reason the Salt Lake Valley is there is because of basin and range extension (east - west pulling apart of the earth's crust). What bothers me more is that NSA is establishing a data center over near Camp Williams and their power needs will double the energy currently used in the Salt Lake Valley (this has already been reported in the SL Trib). So, to put this all in perspective, these data centers might not even hire the locals, and seriously, 50 more jobs for the ebay data center is not worth their new carbon footprint - totally out of proportion I am sure. We don't need them here.

  4. Khabal Singhe

    Actually Ebay datacenters are run by a company named VMC. While they will probably bring in outside management, VMC will hire locally as much as possible.

  5. Lori Sawyer

    "What bothers me more is that NSA is establishing a data center over near Camp Williams and their power needs will double the energy currently used in the Salt Lake Valley" So? Technology requires power. Carbon footprint? Please. If you're going to kneel at the altar of Algore, at least put your kneepads on.