Report: Microsoft Buys 100 Acres of Iowa land for Data center

Bulk of land needed for $1.1 billion construction project acquired

Yevgeniy Sverdlik

August 1, 2014

2 Min Read
Microsoft cloud servers
One of the ways Microsoft supports its cloud servers is packing them in ITPAC modules which can be deployed quickly to expand capacity in any location (Photo: Microsoft)

Microsoft has dished out about $6 million for a chunk of land in West Des Moines, Iowa, for its next data center build-out.

The 100 acres consists of golf-course and farm land, The Des Moines Register reported. The company announced plans to build a $1.1 billion data center in town in April. Microsoft already operates a massive server farm there.

Construction work on a portion of the Willow Creek Golf Course has been going on for several weeks already. Following the sale, Willow Creek still has three nine-hole courses left, according to the Register.

Plans for the project announced earlier described development of more than 150 acres of land, and construction of a 1.2-million-square-foot data center. The site is located about eight miles east of the company’s existing West Des Moines data center.

Local officials and Microsoft agreed on an $87 million incentive package for the project. Iowa was reportedly competing for the massive construction project with the state of Washington, and some had suggested that it won because it was willing to offer tax incentives the contender was not willing to beat.

The Microsoft data center is expected to generate $8 million per year in property-tax revenue for the city. The company has also committed to creating 84 jobs at the site, 66 of which would pay at least $24.32 an hour.

As its Azure cloud services grow in importance as a source of revenue for Microsoft, the company has been expanding the data center infrastructure to support the cloud. In July, corporate vice president of Microsoft’s Worldwide Partner Channel division Phil Sorgen announced in a blog post that the company was planning to add two Azure regions – one in Virginia and one in Iowa.

Construction work on a $350 million data center expansion in Virginia kicked off in June. Microsoft also announced in April that it would invest $270 million to expand its Cheyenne, Wyoming, data center.

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