Colorado Springs Offers Incentives for Wal-Mart

Local officials in Colorado Springs has signed off on $1.7 million in incentives to Wal-Mart, which is considering building a 163,000-square-foot data center in town.

The city of Colorado Springs has signed off on $1.7 million in incentives to Wal-Mart, which is considering building a data center on a 24-acre property on the city's north side. The retail giant is considering building a 163,000-square-foot data center with a planned expansion to about 208,000 square feet in five years, according to local media.

"I really feel like this incentive package for the Wal-Mart data center, it could be a tipping point for our community,” interim City Manager Steve Cox told the Colorado Springs Gazette. "It’s the largest corporation in the world and to have them pick Colorado Springs for one of their major operations, I just think that’s significant."

Construction costs for the new data center are estimated at $100 million, and initially, the data center would need 20 to 40 full-time employees with annual salaries of $30,000 to $70,000. Wal-Mart would also purchase equipment and machinery totaling $50 million to $100 million.

Agilent is also considering a data center expansion in Colorado Springs. The company hopes to add a 20,000 square foot data center and 35,000 square foot technology center at an existing property Agilent owns.

Colorado Springs, a city of 410,000 located about 60 miles south of Denver, is home to existing data centers for Verizon Wireless, HP, FedEx, T. Rowe Price, Progressive and Intel, among others. The climate will support free cooling for much of the year.

Wal-Mart has historically been secretive about its data centers, including a facility in Missouri that has been the focus of curiosity for the local press, which has dubbed it “Area 71.”

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