Aligned Energy Expands Salt Lake City Data Center
- Oct 31, 2019
Data center provider Aligned Energy has begun a major expansion of its data center campus in West Jordan, Utah, in metro Salt Lake City. The new facility will add 240,000 square feet and 48 MW of capacity to the current 34 MW, 300,000-square-foot West Jordan data center. The news follows last week’s announcement that the company obtained a $495 million secured credit facility from an investor group that included Goldman Sachs Bank USA and CPPIB Credit Investments Inc. One of the purposes of the funding was in fact the expansion at the SLC facility.
On full completion, the master-planned Aligned SLC campus will offer 780,000 square feet of space and 130 MW of capacity in Silicon Slopes, a region that describes the growing high-tech region along the Wasatch Front, centered on Salt Lake City and its airport. Silicon Slopes also includes the site of the National Security Agency’s Utah Data Center, a massive $1.5 billion-plus facility in Bluffdale that was completed earlier this year.
Aligned Energy’s expansion reportedly is being driven by a new anchor customer and more broadly by demand for adaptable, scalable data center infrastructure in the West. Andrew Schaap, CEO of Aligned Energy said in a prepared statement that the greenfield development is scheduled for completion in the first quarter of 2020. Aligned declined to disclose a dollar figure for the project.
In addition to the region’s status as a growing tech center, Aligned touts its low risk natural and man-made disasters and notes that Salt Lake City is classified as a cold desert (its elevation is about 4,200 feet), which eases ambient cooling.
Keeping pace with a growing sector
Aligned has been on the move. Prior to obtaining the $495 million credit facility last week, Aligned announced plans to expand capacity at its 19-acre campus in Plano, Texas, in the Dallas metroplex. The U.S. data center market continues to grow, with the total capacity of primary geographic markets rising by 200 MW, or 8 percent, in the first six months, according to a first-half 2019 North American data center report from CBRE. Further, an additional 411 MW of capacity is under construction. Fortunately, one-third of that is already preleased. Absorption remains strong, according to the report, as the U.S. primary data center markets recorded 171 MW of wholesale turnkey colocation absorption in the first half of 2019, representing 57 percent of the full-year record level in 2018.