In the last few years, the roster of Tier I data center cities has expanded with Phoenix joining the club as a result of escalating demand. In fact, the Phoenix metro area is now the second largest market (after Northern Virginia) in the country in terms of capacity under construction. The city’s emergence as major data center real estate location is based on a preponderance of factors that are especially attractive to hyperscale and cloud companies and the providers that support them, including Compass Datacenters.
The Phoenix metro area offers providers a robust fiber infrastructure including both long-haul connectivity via companies like CenturyLink, Electric Lightwave/Integra Level 3, XO, and Sprint and locally focused network availability from carriers such as Windstream and TruCom.
Power prices lower than the national average characterize the state of Arizona, and the Phoenix metro area is served by two power providers, the Salt River Project (SRP) the public water and power utility provider, and the privately-owned alternative provider, Arizona Public Service. Both offer renewable sources such as hydroelectric and, as would be expected, solar.
Low Disaster Risk
Originally the growth of the Phoenix data center market was a result of the area’s low level of disaster risk and continues to add to its appeal. Hurricane damage is non-existent, floods are infrequent, and the area is devoid of any major fault lines.
Companies located in Phoenix data centers may take advantage of the state’s ten-year waiver on sales taxes on data center equipment and labor services. In addition, organizations that fill at least 50% of a vacant building or achieve either LEED or Energy Star certification are eligible for an additional ten-year waiver on sales taxes.
Compass Comes to Phoenix
Compass’ data center in the Phoenix suburb of Goodyear, was selected based on the attributes that enable us to offer our customizable, move-in ready hyperscale and cloud data centers. Per our CEO, Chris Crosby, “Greater Phoenix is a natural next step for Compass since it’s an important location for cloud and hyperscale customers, due to its geographic location, availability of fiber connectivity, affordable cost of data center operations, and the rarity of natural disasters. We have been working closely with a number of cloud, colocation, and hyperscale customers on data center projects on our campuses. The flexibility of our data center design along with our patented delivery methodology enables us to deliver just-in-time facilities customized to their specific requirements. These data centers will allow customers to reduce their on-going operating costs and will provide them with complete control over every element of the building – including security, campus network connectivity, operations and maintenance – all on the aggressive timeline they demand.”
Compass’ rationale for building our Goodyear data center campus is bolstered by the city’s aggressive pursuit of new data providers. In the words of Goodyear mayor Georgia Lord, “Compass Datacenters is a world-class company and a magnificent addition to our growing technology base The city has worked tirelessly with Compass on this multi-parcel, multi-owner land transaction in an effort to provide our community with high-end jobs and high-tech solutions. Goodyear is quickly becoming a dynamic location for tech companies and knowledge workers. We are excited to have Compass as a valued partner in this red hot market.”
The area’s desire to become a primary data center destination is best illustrated by the efforts of the city of Goodyear, APS, Greater Phoenix Economic Council, and Arizona Commerce Authority to work in partnership to assist Compass in bringing its facility to Goodyear. The coordinated efforts that these organizations add to the area’s physical attributes are augmented by the understanding of the positive economic impact that data centers can have on a municipality. As expressed by Michael Martin, APS’ Director of Economic Development “Data management and storage are critically important in our modern world, and Goodyear is an attractive destination for companies like Compass that provide these vital high-tech services. This shows again what can be done with strong economic development partnerships and access to clean, reliable energy to help our communities grow and prosper.”
“Greater Phoenix is rapidly becoming a leading market for data centers in the U.S.,” says Chris Camacho, President and CEO of the Greater Phoenix Economic Council. “The region’s ideal southwest location offers a very low risk of natural disasters, low latency, robust infrastructure and close proximity to a broad customer base. Data drives innovation, and we’re excited that Compass Datacenters selected Goodyear, Arizona as the next step for their strategic company growth.”
Compass growth strategy is predicated on having available capacity in the markets most desired by hyperscale and cloud companies. Phoenix’s, in general, and Goodyear’s physical infrastructure and commitment to data center market development made it the logical destination for our 240MW campus.