Amazon Web Services Plans Virginia Data Center Campuses
Numerous localities in the Commonwealth are under consideration and will be decided at a later date, according to state officials. Amazon is among the largest private-sector employers in Virginia, establishing its first AWS data centers and operations facilities in 2006 and later announcing its second headquarters (HQ2) in Arlington in 2018.
“Virginia is a world leader in innovation and cloud computing, thanks to its investment in a robust, highly-skilled workforce and emphasis on long-term public and private partnerships,” said Roger Wehner, Director of Economic Development, AWS. “Since 2006, AWS has invested more than $35 billion in Virginia, boosting the Commonwealth’s total Gross Domestic Product by nearly $7 billion and supporting thousands of jobs annually. Building on these successful beginnings, we plan to invest an additional $35 billion in the Commonwealth of Virginia by 2040 and create 1,000 jobs.”
Pending approval by the Virginia General Assembly, the Commonwealth is developing a new Mega Data Center Incentive Program, which the company will be eligible to receive. The new program includes up to a 15-year extension of Data Center Sales and Use tax exemptions on qualifying equipment and enabling software. In addition, and also subject to approval by the General Assembly, AWS will be eligible to receive an MEI custom performance grant of up to $140 million for site and infrastructure improvements, workforce development, and other project-related costs.
“With the highest concentration of tech talent in the U.S., Virginia boasts one of the largest data center workforces in the nation, an advantage that sets us apart and directly benefits an industry leader like AWS,” noted Secretary of Commerce and Trade Caren Merrick. “We thank AWS for its commitment to the Commonwealth of Virginia and look forward to a continued partnership in the years to come.”
The Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP) worked with the General Assembly’s Major Employment and Investment Project Approval Commission to secure the project.
“I am pleased the MEI Commission could collaborate with our state and private-sector partners to ensure AWS selected the Commonwealth for this important project,” added Major Employment and Investment Project Approval Commission Chair Delegate Barry Knight. “The addition of multiple data center campuses will underscore Virginia’s position as the world’s largest data center market segment, and we thank AWS for its long-term commitment to the Commonwealth.”
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