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Google breaks ground on $600 million data center in Jackson County

The construction of a new $600 million Google data center is officially underway in Jackson County.

Google executives joined Governor Kay Ivey, Congressman Mo Brooks and state and local officials at a groundbreaking ceremony today to mark the official start of construction on a $600 million data center that will bring as many as 100 jobs to the northeast Alabama community of Bridgeport. The project was formally announced on June 24, 2015.

“Google is committed to investing in Jackson County to create new economic and educational opportunities for the people of Alabama and the surrounding region.” said Dr. Nan Boden, Senior Director and Head of Global Technology Partners for Google Cloud. “As a native Alabamian, I am so proud to be part of the effort to bring this Google data center to life in the coming months and years.”

The Alabama data center will act as an engine for internet traffic, operating in a network that keeps the Google search engine and company products such as Gmail and YouTube up and running for global users 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Alabama officials said the Google data center will provide a major economic boost to the Jackson County area, beginning with hundreds of construction jobs as the facility is built. The data center’s highly technical workforce will number between 75 and 100, with the potential for growth in the future.

“As one of the world’s most dynamic and innovative technology companies, Google’s products touch billions of people across the globe every single day,” Governor Kay Ivey said. “We’re proud that Alabama is playing an important role in Google’s future growth, and we look forward to seeing this data center operation help power that growth.”

Google selected the Jackson County site because it offered the right combination of energy infrastructure and developable land.

“I’m thrilled to join with Google today as they break ground on their data center in Jackson County,” said U.S. Rep. Mo Books (R-Huntsville). “It’s great to see companies like Google recognize what we in the Tennessee Valley have known all along — that we have a tremendous pool of talent in Northern Alabama and that this is a wonderful place to live and work.”

Once the Google facility opens, it will be Alabama’s first large-scale data center. “This is a big day for Bridgeport because it helps our city in many different ways,” Mayor David “Bubba” Hughes said. “Having Google in our community will bring us great jobs and offer real opportunities for our young people. Google is a generous supporter of schools, and the company’s presence will help us recruit other high-tech companies. No doubt about it — this is a game-changer for us.”

As part of its commitment to local communities, Google also announced onsite that it would be donating $100,000 to the Jackson County School District for the growth and development of the region’s student STEM programs.

“With this generous grant, Google has again proven itself a community partner and a supporter of the Jackson County School District,” said Kevin Dukes, superintendent. “We are thankful for their ongoing support of our children’s futures and are thrilled that they will now call this area home.”

For more information on Google data centers, click here.