What does Google’s Nebraska announcement mean for Lincoln? | Local Business News

Google’s announcement Thursday that it’s planning a third Omaha-area data center raises the question: What does that mean for the data center proposed in Lincoln?

The world’s largest internet company said it plans to spend $750 million in Nebraska this year, most of it on a new data center on the northwest side of Omaha, near State Street and Blair High Road, and on the continued buildout of a data center in Papillion that started construction in 2019 and is partially operational.

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No mention was made, however, of a potential Lincoln project.

Though no one has publicly admitted Google is the company planning the huge data center complex northwest of the 56th Street exit on Interstate 80, signs point that direction.

A company called Agate LLC owns the nearly 600 acres of land where the data center is proposed, but XXVI Holdings Inc., which is owned by Google’s parent company, Alphabet, applied for tax incentives for the project.

XXVI Holdings Inc. is the same company that applied for tax incentives for the Google data center in Papillion.

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The Lincoln data center was originally proposed in the summer of 2019, and documents submitted to the city at the time suggested that at full buildout it could encompass 2 million square feet of buildings and have nearly 1,000 employees.

The documents estimated construction would start in 2020, with the potential for 160 people to be working in the first buildings by 2022.

However, no construction activity has occurred at the site, although Lincoln Electric System did confirm it has completed preliminary design work for the electrical infrastructure needed for the center.

Officials from the Lincoln Chamber of Commerce and the Lincoln Partnership for Economic Development declined to comment on the project, as did a spokeswoman for the Nebraska Department of Economic Development.

Google also declined to comment on any Lincoln plans.

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According to documents filed with the City of Omaha, operations for the new data center there will span multiple buildings, totaling more than 1.4 million square feet, along with equipment yards and parking areas. A Google representative estimated construction could last anywhere from 18 to 24 months.

Google’s efforts in Nebraska are part of its plan to invest about $9.5 billion in offices and data centers across the U.S. this year. In a news release, the company also said it will create at least 12,000 new full-time jobs. A representative for the company said Google did not have any new job figures to share for the Omaha area.

The Omaha World-Herald’s Dan Crisler contributed to this report.

Minnie Arwood

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