Apple confirms plans to build data center in Oregon

Tech giant's secret project to construct another large data center in the country's Northwest is revealed.

A 160-acre parcel of land has been signed over to Apple and will be used to build a data center, an Oregon TV station reported today, confirming a long-standing rumor.

The piece of land in Prineville cost the company $5.6 million and the deal, formerly known as "Project Maverick," has been quietly in the works for months, according to a KTVZ.com report. An Apple representative confirmed to the station that the company purchased the land for a data center but declined to comment further.

Before the deed was signed over last week, no one was allowed to speak about the deal because of non-disclosure agreements Apple had county officials sign. Despite those agreements, the deal was leaked in December when local newspaper The Oregonian reported that it spoke to insiders who acknowledged that Apple was exploring the possibility of building a data center in that part of the state and was expected to make a decision that month.

According to KTVZ.com, Web companies have flocked to Oregon because of the state's sizable property tax breaks and low power costs. Facebook, Google, and Amazon also have data farms in the same area.

This is Apple's latest data center expansion and comes at a time when the company is placing an increased reliance in servers as part of its products. Last week, Apple unveiled Mountain Lion , the next version of computer OS, due this summer. The software has deeper integration with iCloud, the cloud storage and sync service it introduced in October, letting users store and access desktop files in the cloud. Well ahead of that, Apple was seen signing leases to expand its data center capacity and has reportedly invested $1 billion in its North Carolina facility.

An environmental report Apple released yesterday announced that its North Carolina data center will be powered by the largest end-user-owned solar array and will have the largest non-utility fuel cell in the country. Already the center has been awarded LEED Platinum certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. According to Mac Rumors, Apple spokesperson Kristin Huguet said that the company also plans to make the Oregon facility "green."

Apple representatives did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

 

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