Apple will open data centers in Waukee

Apple is coming to Iowa Tech giant Apple is coming to Iowa and building two data centers in Waukee. Photo courtesy of Creative Commons

Apple is coming to Iowa.

It was approved Thursday morning for the tech giant to build two, state-of-the-art data centers that use 100 percent renewable energy in Waukee.

The total project cost is $1.375 billion.

The buildings will be located one mile West of Waukee, off Hickman Road. The project will create 50 jobs, which must pay a minimum of $29.12 per hour, per the state incentive program; Another 1,688 jobs will be created during the construction phase.

Apple purchased 2,000 acres of land from Waukee, according to state documents.

State documents say the first building will be completed by January of 2020 and the second by January of 2021.

Thursday morning, state and local officials awarded Apple with more than $207 million in incentives to build the proposed data center.

The Waukee City Council approved a 71 percent property tax abatement over 20 years for Apple—an incentive worth 188,239,943— and the Iowa Economic Development Authority board approved $19.65 million in investment tax credits.

The city is also expected to fund “significant” infrastructure improvements for Apple’s project but state officials said those costs are “to be determined.”

Both boards approved the incentives unanimously.

Debi Durham—director of the Iowa Economic Development Authority—said these data centers have a wide economic impact.

“When you think about data centers, they really are powering cutting edge innovation,” Durham said. “That is the foundation for building this tech economy.”

Durham said this raises the profile for technology in Iowa.

“It’s really important to see that when you have people like these kind of companies making investment in Iowa, all eyes are on Iowa for building this technology ecosystem,” Durham said. “It’s really changing the knowledge economy here in Iowa.”

This story will be updated as more information becomes available.