Data Center in Ashburn Opens RagingWire

Sacramento-based RagingWire has officially opened its Ashburn data center. Being the latest company to plant a venture known as “data center alley” in Loudoun County. Despite signs of weakness in other parts of the local community’s federal technology businesses the data center business has showed little sign of slowing.

The company provided tours of its new center, which departs from the typical muted colors, featuring bold purple and green walls and art created by a company employee. The 150,000-square-foot facility includes office space, conference rooms and lounges.

For data center companies, Loudoun makes an attractive choice. George Macricostas, chief executive and vice chairman at RagingWire, said his California Company was seeking an area with the technical infrastructure to support its new facility. “You need to be where the fiber is,” he said. RagingWire’s new data center is anchored by Web hosting company DreamHost, and Macricostas said the company is considering expansion.

Loudoun and Virginia officials are trying to keep the area attractive. While producing relatively few jobs, Rizer said he estimates that every 250,000 square feet of data center space results in about $5.5 million in annual local tax revenue meaning 6 million square feet would yield about $132 million.

“Virginia has one of the strongest IT economic engines in the state,” said James D. Duffey Jr., the state’s technology secretary.

There are signs that competition elsewhere is growing. In recent months, several companies including Beltsville-based AiNet and Reston-based ByteGrid have announced new or expanded data centers in Maryland, while other states have improved their data center incentives. Nebraska, for instance, expanded its tax incentives for large data center projects.

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