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

Can small be large?

Linda Baker
Wednesday, April 01, 2015
040115-lindablogthumbBY LINDA BAKER

Leaders in Oregon's ag sector gathered this morning in Portland’s Coopers Hall winery/taproom to discuss the role of the region as an export gateway, impediments to exporting products and solutions to containerized shipping challenges.


Read more...

Oregon businesses face destruction from future earthquake

The Latest
Wednesday, May 20, 2015
htctthumb1BY KIM MOORE | RESEARCH EDITOR

An earthquake would completely destroy many Oregon businesses, highlighting the urgent need for the private and public sectors to collaborate on shoring up disaster preparedness, said panelists at an Oregon Business breakfast summit today.


Read more...

It's a Man's Man's Man's World

May 2015
Friday, April 24, 2015
BY AMY MILSHTEIN

Male tech workers speak out on the industry's gender troubles.


Read more...

6 highlights from the Craft Brewers Conference

The Latest
Friday, April 17, 2015
thumbcbcPHOTOS BY  JASON E. KAPLAN

The 32nd annual CBC attracted a record number of attendees (11,000)  to the Oregon Convention Center.


Read more...

Foundations perspective

May 2015
Monday, April 27, 2015
BY KIM MOORE

A conversation with Martha Richards, executive director of the James F. & Marion L. Miller Foundation.


Read more...

On the Road

April 2015
Friday, March 27, 2015
BY LINDA BAKER

My daughter turned 18 last week, and for her birthday I got her a Car2Go membership. Not to label myself a disruptor or anything, but it felt like a groundbreaking moment. The two of us, mother and child, were participating in a new teen rite of passage: Instead of handing over the car keys, I handed over a car-sharing card — with the caveat that she not use the gift as her own personal car service.


Read more...

Nine lives

Linda Baker
Friday, May 22, 2015
0f4f7bfBY LINDA BAKER | OB EDITOR

Roy Kaufmann always lands on his feet.


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