Microsoft to Expand Scope of Iowa Project

It took a while to get rolling. But Microsoft’s data center project in Iowa could be doubling in size soon, even though it hasn’t officially opened.

Microsoft laid the groundwork for an expansion of its $200 million facility in West Des Moines last week when it gained approval for tax credits from the Iowa Economic Development Board, according to the Des Moines Register. The state board said Microsoft could invest another $200 million in construction and server hardware, and create at least 10 additional jobs.

The West Des Moines project was announced in August 2008, but Microsoft never outlined a firm construction timetable. After the economic crisis took hold in the fall of 2008, Microsoft put the project on hold as it said it would reduce its investment in its data center expansion, citing the economic slowdown and the need to cut expenses.

In June 2010 the project was back on, and Microsoft began construction. The project appears to be nearing completion, but Microsoft has not made any announcements about its progress or production timetable in West Des Moines.

Microsoft’s effort to add data center capacity isn’t limited to the U.S. Last month Irish media reported  that Microsoft “is planning a multi-million Euro investment in an expansion of its $500 million data center in Dublin.” The paper said plans call for building a 120,000 square foot single-story data center alongside the existing 303,000 square foot facility.

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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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