EAGLE MOUNTAIN (News4Utah) – A desolate 490 acres of sagebrush in Eagle Mountain is about to become a high tech data center for Facebook.
The 970,000 square foot facility announced Wednesday is the result of months of negotiations and like a popular Facebook post it’s getting a big thumbs up from elected officials.
“It’s a win win win for everybody,” Governor Gary Herbert told News4Utah. “The opportunity to increase economic expansion off the I-15 corridor is a significant benefit to us.”
Rep. Mia Love, (R) 4th District, was ecstatic that her district was getting the $750 milllion data center.
“This is about the future,” Rep. Love said. “They have really young kids here and it’s about creating a place where people can live, thrive, work, play. I’m really excited. I’m excited not just for Eagle Mountain but the surrounding areas and what that’s going to do for economic development.”
It will take thousands of construction workers to build the “campus” as Facebook calls it plus at least a hundred employees to run it.
Rachel Peterson is Facebook’s VP of Data Center Strategy.
“The jobs range on this campus from electricians, people who can run the facility, server technicians, network engineers to culinary, security and folks who have to run the campus,” Peterson said.
The state of Utah offered a reported $150 million tax incentive to get Facebook to build here.
“Keep in mind: We’re not giving anything,” Governor Herbert said. “What happens is people have to invest to create economic return, create tax revenues and then we give some of that increased tax revenue back. So the taxpayers aren’t giving anything to Facebook. They’re just going to be able to save some of the money they’re spending in tax revenues and grow the economic tax pie they’re going to be able to get some of that back after the fact.”
“We can’t wait to get started,” Peterson said. “We’re just thrilled to be here. We have a beautiful site. We have a great community and we’re excited to get going here.”
Facebook plans to invest more than $100 million in infrastructure including roads, water and a renewable energy power substation they’re building in conjunction with Rocky Mountain Power.
Officials say that construction is scheduled to begin here immediately and the facility should be online in 2020.