John Paczkowski

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Apple Reportedly Mulling Oregon Data Center Expansion

apple_matrixApple hasn’t yet finished building its massive new data center in the Pacific Northwest — let alone lit it up — but already the company is mulling its expansion.

The Oregonian reports that Crook County, Ore., officials are scrambling to bring a 96-acre parcel of land adjacent to the site of Apple’s Prineville data center into city limits for industrial zoning and possible purchase by a company operating under the pseudonym “Project Pillar.”

While officials declined to identify the company, they did tell the publication that it has had dealings with the county in the past, during which it went by a different name: Maverick. And that was the code name used by Apple as it negotiated the Prineville data center deal.

It’s likely, then, that Apple is indeed eyeing the property as part of an aggressive expansion of the data centers it uses to support iCloud and iTunes. Indeed, given the parcel’s proximity to the 338,000-square-foot data center Apple is currently building and the fact that it’s covered by the same tax exemptions, it seems a no-brainer. And, while a deal isn’t in the offing yet, Crook County officials are certainly doing all they can to grease the wheels for it.

“In the past, Project Pillar has expressed a possible future interest in this property,” Crook County Assistant Planning Director Phil Stenbeck said of local government’s efforts to zone the acreage for industrial use. “In the event that they would move forward with being more interested … we want to be in position where they could act on their request.”

Apple declined comment on plans for the expansion of its Oregon data center.


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