Google Data Center to Open in Alabama
Alabama residents and politicians expressed enthusiasm recently, while understandable congratulating themselves on winning a bid to host a new Google data center. Located in Stevenson, the Jackson County facility will cost $600 million to build, bringing up to a projected one hundred upper-income jobs to the region. The company plans to begin construction sometime in 2016.
Alabamians should be excited and proud, given Google has a total of only 14 data centers internationally. The Stevenson location will be the seventh domestic center.
Part of Long Term Development Plans
Leaders have been trying to revive the state’s economy, especially in rural areas, for decades. In fact, Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) Chairman Joe Ritch was a major proponent of bringing Google to Alabama. The proposed data center site is at the former Widows Creek TVA power plant. President Franklin Roosevelt created TVA in 1933 to bring electrical and economic development to this long-deprived rural area. That Google, the global hi-tech giant, will enter the region helps fulfill Roosevelt’s dream. Politicians and city planners echoed this sentiment, believing that the data center will serve as the catalyst for sustained infrastructure development, including the reopening of dormant coal plants.
Google announced, as well, that the data center will use its most advanced technologies to remain energy efficient. It plans to conserve power by using almost 4 times less than a same-sized center would have required five years ago.
Jackson County feels rightfully proud in being chosen by the technology behemoth. This center is the first new one for Google in the United States since 2007. It is also the first project announced as part of the Alabama specialized data center incentives program, passed in 2012, to bring hi-tech companies, and their suppliers, to the state.
A Bright Future Expected
Google remains one of the companies regularly listed as a “top place to work.” Its brand is one of the most recognizable in the world. Now, Alabama workers with the right educations will have an opportunity to establish careers with Google. Furthermore, Stevenson will soon be part of an elite network of cities housing facilities responsible for keeping the search engine giant’s products operating smoothly.