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Google buys land for potential new European hyperscale campus

Just last week, the company was granted environmental permission to build another facility in Europe’s Nordic region, in rural Sweden.

By João Marques Lima

Founder and Editor, The Tech Capital

4 Mins

July 01, 2021 | 12:48 PM BST

Google buys land for potential new European hyperscale campus

Aerial view of Google’s already operational Eemshaven data centre opened in 2016 in the Netherlands. Source: Google

Google (NASDAQ: GOOGL) has acquired a plot of industrial real estate land in Oldambt, the Netherlands, where it could build a new data centre within Dutch borders.

Oldambt Municipality officials said in a statement that based on Google’s specifications, coupled with the knowledge available within the NOM acquisition team, a choice was made for the site in Hoogebrug in Winschoten.

NOM is the Investerings- en Ontwikkelingsmaatschappij voor Noord-Nederland or the Investment and Development Company for the Northern Netherlands.

The independent investment advisory company has established contact between the municipality, the province and Google and will also remain involved in possible further developments.

It is not yet known whether and when the 6-8 hectares lot at the Hoogebrug 3 Industrial Business Park will be furnished, officials added.

Google was not immediately available for comment.

Member of a municipal assembly Erich Wünker, said: “The fact that an international company has chosen Oldambt is good for economic development. The company can be a trigger for others to do business here. And that can be a good impulse for employment and the quality of life in Oldambt.

“Digital storage and digital development have made an even faster advance due to COVID-19. Just look at the developments of working from home and online learning, this will largely remain after the pandemic. And for that we need companies that facilitate and develop this.”

Wünker continued to explain that officials are now working together with the neighbouring municipalities of Midden-Groningen, Veendam and the province of Groningen on a vision to stimulate economic developments and employment across the wider region.

“This concerns the area from the city of Groningen in an easterly direction, with farther places such as Hoogezand, Veendam, Zuidbroek and Winschoten, up to the German border,” he said.

“The municipalities of Oldambt, Midden-Groningen, Veendam and the province of Groningen are jointly making choices about which developments we want to allow in the future to make the region more powerful. We want to stimulate economic developments and employment.”

Google first opened its first Dutch data centre in 2016, in Eemshaven, at an investment of €600 million.

In 2018, the public cloud operator announced a €500 million expansion of the campus and in June 2019, it announced a further Eemshaven expansion, as well as the planning of a new site in Agriport, 30 miles north of Amsterdam. In total, Google’s data centre investment in the Netherlands currently stands at €2.5 billion.

The company has also recently opened a sustainable water supply in collaboration with North Water and Waterbedrijf Groningen, enabling the usage of industrial water in Eemshaven to cool the servers. The company is now looking at how to use wastewater for the same purpose.

Just last week, Google was granted environmental permission to build another facility in Europe’s Nordic region, in rural Sweden. The 109-hectares site had been in legal review and discussion since it was originally purchased in 2017.

Today, Google operates data centre sites in 25 regions with the availability of 76 zones and 144 network edge locations.

The company is on a rapid expansion path, with new regions being built in Doha (Qatar), Toronto (Canada), Melbourne (Australia), Delhi (India), Paris (France), Milan (Italy), Santiago (Chile), Madrid (Spain) and Turin (Italy).

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João Marques Lima

Founder and Editor, The Tech Capital

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