The Amazon data center dance

| Print |  Email
Articles - September 2010
Friday, August 20, 2010
0910_ATS16

Boardman didn’t get a prison, it lost out on a Procter & Gamble plant to Utah and the $35 million Amazon data center at the Port of Morrow has been empty and half-finished for almost a year. It’s tough times for the small town. Yet now the port is preparing a site for another data center off Tower Road, six miles west of town that’s potentially an expansion of Amazon’s port site.

“We are partitioning a parcel for a potential data center project,” says Gary Neal, the port’s director. Neal, like almost everyone involved in working with data centers in Oregon, would not give any details about what company is involved. But Carla McLane, the director of planning, said this new proposed site would be a satellite of the Amazon data center at the port. The city owns the 45 acres in question and the port filed the application, which was for two parcels: one for immediate development and the other an expansion of that development.

So A plus B equals Amazon (doing business as Vadata), but don’t expect Amazon to confirm that, either. The company requested all questions be submitted via email, and then replied: “While we continually add resources to support the growing needs of our businesses, we don’t comment on specific activities in any of our data centers.”

Neal would not say when Amazon might resume construction on the data center at the port, which is to be built in six construction phases, with about 20 full-time jobs when it is complete. In an interview this past November with Tri-Cities TV station KEPR, he said the data center project was expected to be completed in late summer of this year.

Oops. Meanwhile, another Oregon data center is going great guns and being very public about it. Facebook announced in July that it would double the size of its Prineville data center now under construction. On a posting on the data center’s Facebook page, Tom Furlong, director of site operations, said: “To meet the needs of our growing business, we have decided to go ahead with the second phase of the project, which was an option we put in place when we broke ground earlier this year. The second phase should be finished by early 2012.”

Portland-based Hoffman Construction is contracted to build the Amazon data center. VP Bart Eberwein would not comment on it, but did say in general terms about the high-tech market: “Some projects that were stalled might be started up again. Things are starting to thaw but we don’t know how quickly.”

ROBIN DOUSSARD
 

More Articles

MBA Perspective

February 2015
Tuesday, January 27, 2015
BY KIM MOORE

Robin Anderson, dean of the Pamplin School of Business, University of Portland: "You need people who are comfortable leading in ambiguity."


Read more...

Chronicling Gov. Kitzhaber's march to resignation

The Latest
Wednesday, February 11, 2015
021115-kitzhaber-jekaplan14-thumbBY JACOB PALMER | OB DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

Recapping a wild week featuring plenty of will he or won't he resign drama.


Read more...

Money Talks

March 2015
Saturday, February 21, 2015
BY LINDA BAKER | OB DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

Will community banks survive the digital age? Three CEOs peer into banking's crystal ball.


Read more...

On the Brink

March 2015
Friday, February 20, 2015
BY APRIL STREETER | OB CONTRIBUTOR

Leslie Carlson channels the big idea.


Read more...

Meeting Facilities Perspective

March 2015
Tuesday, February 24, 2015
BY KIM MOORE | OB RESEARCH EDITOR

A conversation with Donna Earley, director of sales and marketing for the Salem Convention Center.


Read more...

Raising the Stakes

February 2015
Monday, January 26, 2015
BY LINDA BAKER

The 2014 Bend Venture Conference set a record for the most cash, investments and prizes awarded at an angel conference in the Pacific Northwest. Investments in the six winning companies exceeded $1 million. The 11th annual conference was hosted by Economic Development of Central Oregon.


Read more...

A legislative preview — and celebration

Linda Baker
Friday, January 23, 2015
012315-speaker-thumbBY LINDA BAKER | OB EDITOR

The Northwest Environmental Business Council previews the 2015 legislative agenda as Hatch Oregon celebrates Oregon's new community crowdfunding rules.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS