Amazon Web Services (AWS) will invest $35 billion by 2040 to establish multiple data center campuses across Virginia. Numerous localities in the commonwealth are under consideration, and will be decided at a later date. The new campuses will combine expandable capacity to position AWS for long-term growth. Amazon is among Virginia’s largest private-sector employers, establishing its first AWS data centers and operations facilities in 2006 and later announcing its second headquarters (HQ2) in Arlington in 2018. This latest planned investment will create at least 1,000 total new jobs across Virginia.
“Virginia is a world leader in innovation and cloud computing, thanks to its investment in a robust, highly-skilled workforce and emphasis on long-term public and private partnerships,” said Roger Wehner, Director of Economic Development, AWS. “Since 2006, AWS has invested more than $35 billion in Virginia, boosting the Commonwealth’s total Gross Domestic Product by nearly $7 billion and supporting thousands of jobs annually. Building on these successful beginnings, we plan to invest an additional $35 billion in the Commonwealth of Virginia by 2040 and create 1,000 jobs.”
The Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP) worked with the General Assembly’s Major Employment and Investment (MEI) Project Approval Commission to secure the project to expand data center investment to new locations across Virginia. Pending approval by the Virginia General Assembly, Virginia is developing a new Mega Data Center Incentive Program, which the company will be eligible to receive. The new program includes up to a 15-year extension of Data Center Sales and Use tax exemptions on qualifying equipment and enabling software. In addition, and also subject to approval by the General Assembly, AWS will be eligible to receive an MEI custom performance grant of up to $140 million for site and infrastructure improvements, workforce development, and other project-related costs.
“AWS has a significant presence in Virginia, and we are excited that AWS has chosen to continue their growth and expand their footprint across the Commonwealth,” said Governor Glenn Youngkin. “Virginia will continue to encourage the development of this new generation of data center campuses across multiple regions of the Commonwealth. These areas offer robust utility infrastructure, lower costs, great livability, and highly educated workforces and will benefit from the associated economic development and increased tax base, assisting the schools and providing services to the community.”
Virginia Earmarks $90M To Develop Industrial Sites
A total of $90 million in Virginia Business Ready Sites Program (VBRSP) development grants will be used to develop 21 sites across the commonwealth. Administered by the VEDP, this discretionary program helps characterize and develop sites to enhance Virginia’s infrastructure with more competitive project-ready sites, attract new business, and accelerate expansion. The program’s goal is to identify, assess, and improve the readiness of industrial sites with at least 100 contiguous, developable acres or 50 acres in the western part of the commonwealth.