APRIL 4, 2011 (LINCOLN, NEB.)—The Nebraska Department of Economic Development has awarded $982,892 Community Development Block Grant funding in the Economic Development category to Fremont to move forward with developing a power park site equipped and “shovel ready” with basic infrastructure to attract high tech data centers, high tech industries, and companies with intensive power needs. The project will create at least 31 full-time jobs.
Of the amount, $975,392 will be used for land acquisition. The remaining $7,500 will be applied to administrative costs.
The City of Fremont will contribute $2.705 million, bringing the total project to $3,687,892. Joining the City as a partner in the project is the Greater Fremont Development Council.
Fremont is in the process of developing 80-plus acres into the speculative data park in the city’s north central section. A master plan study was completed by H.F. Lenz. The site has large quantities of low cost, reliable power (with the ability to provide up to 25+MW), water, sewer, and telecommunications. The property also offers green advantage capabilities in construction and operation, including geothermal and outside air economization for cooling.
On completion, the park may be leased or purchased by a single business, or multiple businesses.
The City of Fremont actually helped the Department develop the pilot program before its launch and is currently site-ready and working to recruit a data center.
A recent study by the Battelle Organization for the Nebraska Department of Economic Development identified the need for immediately developable sites in industries of opportunity for Nebraska. Additionally, Battelle identified high technology firms as a potential growth target for Nebraska’s excellent operating environment. Data centers can often act as an anchor for a park that also attracts other high-technology jobs to the community.
Nebraska is attractive to high-end power users due to power rates that are among some of the lowest in the nation, which helps companies maintain lower operating costs. The state also offers a safe and secure location and skilled labor force suitable for companies operating data centers and manufacturing advanced or renewable energy products. Yahoo! was the most recent company to take advantage of Nebraska’s wide-ranging attributes. In April 2010, Nebraska made changes to the performance based Nebraska Advantage Incentive Program to include sales tax refunds and personal property tax exemptions for data centers.
For information about Fremont’s speculative data park, contact Jan Rise at 402-727-2624, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
For information on DED’s available power park sites, contact Tim O’Brien at 800-426-6505, 402-471-3769, or email@example.com.