Several interviews with the internet officials of top notch IT companies, hardware vendors, and economic development groups have been conducted to understand the reason behind North Carolina being a favorite destination for data centers. Investigations reveal some really economically feasible reasons for North Carolina to be adjudged as a major hub for data centers.

Facebook was the first of the other internet majors to set up a data center in the region of North Carolina. If you live on the East coast, and log into Facebook, there are fair number of chances that you know the comments, posts, likes are all being served up by this data center in the forest city of North Carolina.

Facebook is not the only internet major to have built a server farm amidst the forest area of North Carolina. It is not the only one to have chosen North Carolina as home to some of its main server farms. Within a hundred mile radius, Apple and Google have established their data centers. Walt Disney, Wipro, AT&T are some of the other companies to ventured into North Carolina in search of a suitable place for their data centers.

Companies need to analyze several different factors when deciding the location for their data centers. It is in fact a complex decision, and requires a perfect understanding of the conditions, and requirements. Vice President of site operations, Facebook had expressed in an interview that the company looks at 50 different factors before picking a site for its data centers. Analysts say that Microsoft looks at 43 crucial factors before data center venue selection.

This decision has become complex over the years with companies looking at cleaner, greener power sources, and the ever increasing population of internet users. In addition, there is a notion that web scale computing has changed the way servers are built, and hence require a different scale of design. This adds to the already existing woe of data center location hunt.

Why is North Carolina a hotspot for data centers?

Low cost of power: The Duke Energy person, Mr. Thomas William in an interview said that North Carolina offers 4 cents against 6 cents for every kilowatt hour of power. This is very less compared to the average U.S. energy costs. The reason behind the low cost offering of power in North Carolina is that the power here is a mix of 61 percent coal, 31% nuclear power, and only 4% clean power. Coal and nuclear power are some of the cheapest sources of energy generation.

Power transmission capacity: It is very difficult for such massive sized data centers to even find a place capable of transmitting huge amounts of power. The area around North Carolina has most of this place already built out. With the textile industry and furniture industries increasingly moved offshore, North Carolina provides sufficient industrial capacity.

Rural areas: In North Carolina, most of the neighborhood localities are rural. This makes the plots relatively inexpensive. It is not prone to problems and hassles from the nearby communities. The plots are suitable for the installment of huge power stations and buildings.

These are just some of the reasons for the buzz around North Carolina and its data centers. The other reasons include

Incentives and company friendly policies by the state government

  • Abundant supply of water
  • Fast and hassle free deployment of equipments
  • Fast East coast internet traffic
  • Close proximity to the airport, and a major city
  • Conducive climate for operations

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