Google announces US$2 billion Fort Wayne Data Centre

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A new US$2 billion data centre is set to be put up in Fort Wayne, Indiana, by Google. The tech giant announced their plans this week detailing that they will be working together with Indiana Michigan Power Company (I&M) to bring this project together. I&M was chosen because they will help add clean energy to the local grid. Google is yet to release information on the location, timeline or scope of the project, however. Additionally, there will be an operational support complex constructed on the southwest side of Fort Wayne.

Scope of the Google Fort Wayne Data Centre

According to filings made with the local government, the project is named Project Zodiac. The filings were confirmed by Google and imply the construction of a 12-building campus. It also suggests that the facility will span over 700 acres. Currently, over a dozen data campuses are in operation by Google in the United States. The company still has more in development. Data campuses play an essential role in supporting the company’s AI innovations and growing Google Cloud business. They also help power popular digital services such as Google Cloud, Workspace (which includes Gmail, Docs, Sheets and more), Search and Maps, used by millions globally.

Historic day': Google's $2 billion data center campus to partner with I&M,  Ivy Tech | WANE 15

Google’s commitment to clean energy

The company’s collaboration with I&M will advance the clean energy transition. Additionally, it will help maintain affordable, reliable service for all I&M customers. Google also has an ambitious 2030 goal to run all its data centres and campuses on carbon-free energy (CFE), every hour of every day. Working with I&M will help bring it closer to that goal. Presently, Google already matches 100% of its global annual electricity consumption with renewable energy purchases. As a pioneer in computing infrastructure, its data centres are some of the most efficient in the world.

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“Indiana has made it a strategic priority to cultivate the economy of the future, and we’re already seeing the impact of our work thanks to the partnership of companies like Google. Not only is Google choosing Indiana to power its global AI and cloud infrastructure, but we’re thrilled to see the company already investing heavily in the northeast Indiana community. These initiatives will help skill up our Hoosier workforce, preparing residents for the jobs of the future. And, at the same time bringing clean energy resources to the region propelling continued growth in industrial sustainability,” said Governor Eric J. Holcomb.

Collaboration with the community

Google will bring its Skilled Trades and Readiness (STAR) program to the Fort Wayne area as part of its commitment to community development. The company is also collaborating with Ivy Tech Community College. This will help increase the entry-level pipeline in the skilled trades with a focus on underrepresented communities. All STAR pre-employment programs are paid training programs. They offer networking opportunities to help participants move directly into jobs with Google data centre construction sites or other local projects.

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In addition, Google announced $250,000 in initial community and programmatic support. This will benefit two critical Fort Wayne initiatives: the new Fort Wayne Early Learning Center, which will serve both East Allen County and Fort Wayne Community Schools students and their children, and Just Neighbors Interfaith Homeless Network, Fort Wayne’s only local emergency housing shelter for families in need.

“We are thrilled to announce our investment in Fort Wayne as the site for our newest data center. Our decision to make a commitment of this magnitude is a true testament to the strategic and collaborative nature of many leaders across Indiana, Allen County, and, particularly, Fort Wayne. Together, Fort Wayne and Google will help power the digital future. This includes AI innovation across our enterprise and consumer services,” said Joe Kava, Vice President, Global Data Centers, Google.

Google plans to build data center in northeast Indiana

Amazon’s US$11bn Indiana Data Campus

Moreover, Amazon this week announced plans for a campus around New Carlisle. Meta, DataBank, US Signals , Netrality, and Digital Crossroads are also present in Indiana. The data centre is a US$11 billion facility and is the largest capital investment announcement in the state’s history. New Carlisle is located in Northern Indiana on 600 acres of agricultural land. Further details on this project were not announced either. Amazon, however, has secured a number of tax breaks for the campus. The Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC) is offering AWS data center sales tax exemptions for eligible capital investments over a 50-year term.

Also Read: Google announces US$1 billion London data centre investment

“AWS’s unwavering commitment to supporting our customers and helping drive digital transformation has been evident through our infrastructure investments across the United States. Building upon this, we are thrilled to be expanding our operations in Indiana through this planned $11 billion investment, which will create numerous well-paying job opportunities and tap into the state’s burgeoning tech sector, while contributing significantly to the state’s growing economy,” added Roger Wehner, AWS director of economic development.

The IEDC also committed an investment of up to $18.3 million in the form of headcount-based tax credits. Additionally, up to $5 million in training grants and up to $55 million in Hoosier Business Investment tax credits. Lastly, up to $20 million in redevelopment tax credits.

“Amazon has long been an important economic partner in Indiana, and we are excited to welcome AWS. This significant investment solidifies Indiana’s leadership position in the economy of the future. It will undoubtedly have a positive ripple effect on the town of New Carlisle, the north-central region, and the state of Indiana for years to come,” said Governor Holcomb.