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Microsoft Planning 3 New Data Centers In Washington State

Microsoft is adding more than 750K SF of new data center space in its home state.


The cloud computing giant has filed plans for a new data center campus in Malaga, located in central Washington about 20 miles from the company’s existing data center hub in the town of Quincy. First reported by The Wenatchee World, the project would consist of three 250K SF data centers.

Microsoft’s Malaga project will be built on a 102.5-acre plot the company acquired in April 2022 in a pair of deals totaling $9.2M. Construction on the first of the three buildings is slated to begin this year and take around 18 months to complete, according to Microsoft’s project filings, while work on the two additional buildings will commence “as market demands warrant in a similar duration." Full build-out is expected by 2027.

The project also includes a $2.3M water works project that will pump water from the Columbia River to cool the facility. In filings with local authorities, Microsoft and local officials indicated that each of the campus' three buildings will use around 121,000 gallons of water each day. Construction on the first phase of the water project is planned to commence in June. 

March has been a busy month on the data center front for Microsoft. In addition to its plans in Washington, last week the company spent $41.5M to acquire a 30-acre industrial site in the Hoffman Estates area of Chicago as a possible data center location. This came on the heels of Microsoft unveiling plans for a $175.9M expansion of its data center facilities in San Antonio.

Indeed, while most hyperscalers are slowing their capital expenditures on new data centers or canceling projects entirely, industry insiders say Microsoft is likely to be at the front of the digital infrastructure spending pack.

“We expect Microsoft to lead the other top four cloud [service providers] in 2023,” Dell’Oro Group Research Director Baron Fung wrote in a February report.

Fung pointed to the recent completion of a handful of Microsoft data center projects that had been held up by supply chain delays as a reason for its development push. Artificial intelligence may also be a factor: Microsoft has made an aggressive push to be at the forefront of a wave of AI adoption, providing the infrastructure for ChatGPT and integrating ChatGPT and other OpenAI products into its cloud services.

As Bisnow previously reported, AI computing requires dedicated infrastructure that is different than what most existing data centers can support. As a result, AI is becoming a driving force behind new data center development for Microsoft and other hyperscalers like Google, AWS and Meta

Related Topics: Microsoft