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The company purchased 240 acres from Crook County for $5.4 million, construction begins this month

IMAGE COURTESY OF FACEBOOK - An artist's rendering of Prineville Data Center buildings four and five, which total 900,000 square feet, plus 70,000 square feet for an administrative space connecting the two buildings. Construction begins this month on building four.

Facebook announced Tuesday morning that it will construct two new data center buildings at the Prineville Data Center campus, bringing the total building count to five.

Crook County Judge Seth Crawford called the news extremely exciting.

"It's continued diversification of our economy, and more open jobs as our economy turns around," he said.

The social media giant finalized the purchase of 240 acres from Crook County a week ago for $5.4 million, Crawford reported.

According to KC Timmons, of Data Center Operations for the West Region, building four will break ground north of the current facilities this month and begin serving traffic in 2020, while building five will break ground in 2018 and begin serving traffic in 2022.

Crawford said he believes construction work will begin as soon as possible.

"They're starting it very quickly," he said. "They already have people up there working, moving the dirt."

Crawford noted that the county has been working with the company for a few months to finalize plans, including approving the enterprise zone.

"We worked with the company, proving that we're as business-friendly as possible to make sure that they continue to grow here," he said.

Timmons said the new buildings — which total 900,000 square feet, plus 70,000 square feet for an administrative space connecting the two buildings — will represent a capital investment of hundreds of millions of dollars, which is in addition to the more than $1 billion Facebook has already invested in the Prineville Data Center.

"This translates into keeping construction crews busy for another four years, plus additional full-time jobs as the data halls come online," Timmons said.

As of September 2017, the Prineville Data Center supports more than 200 people working full-time, with approximately 75 percent living in Crook County.

Crawford does not know exactly how many jobs the projects will create, "but, they've shown that they hire drastically more than what they're required through the process, (to receive tax incentives from the county) which is 10 people."

Currently, the data center has 10 job openings, ranging from design and construction to operations and network engineering.

January will mark the eighth anniversary of breaking ground on the Prineville Data Center — Facebook's first custom-built data center. Since that time, there has been a lot of activity on the site, including the completion of three buildings, for a total of 1.25 million square feet.

"In both the construction and operation of this data center, we have made it a priority to invest in the community, create positive impact, and be a great neighbor," Timmons said. "We continue to be thankful to the city of Prineville, Crook County, and the State of Oregon for their ongoing support of the Prineville Data Center, and we are excited to deepen our local investment. We have made Prineville our home, and we are proud to be a part of such a wonderful community."

IMAGE COURTESY OF FACEBOOK - An artist's rendering of the Prineville Data Center campus after the fourth and fifth buildings are completed, located in the upper right corner of the image.

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