Exclusive: First large structures going up at Apple's Reno iCloud data center

Posted:
in iCloud edited January 2014
The first large structures are now being erected at Apple's iCloud data center site near Reno, Nev., at the sprawling but largely still vacant Reno Technology Park where the company is building its fourth major U.S. server installation supporting its online iTunes, iBookstore, App Store and iCloud services.

Apple Reno iCloud site


Apple's construction contractors have so far been laying the necessary groundwork for building one of the world's greenest data centers.

AppleInsider has previously detailed the massive scope of site preparation, the sophisticated water technology being installed and the site's high speed data conduits.

After the company's initial jump start in construction that created a 21,000-square-foot pilot test facility, the site hasn't seen many obvious signs of new construction apart from ongoing dirt movement by a fleet of huge trucks.

$16 million of construction

In May, Apple filed permits outlining more than $16 million of contraction, including $4 million in general infrastructure improvements, a $4.6 million, 38,000 square foot administration building with a "loading dock and staging area," and over $6.8 million for two "data processing cluster buildings" described as totaling 50,570 square feet.

Last month, the site completed the initial segments of the drainage work serving the large area that will be used to build permanent data center facilities. The new concrete moat surrounding the region is visible in the photos below.

Apple Reno iCloud site

Apple Reno iCloud site


In just the last week however, construction teams have begun erecting the first new structures on the main plot, which is located just west of the initial pilot facility and AT&T's networking building. The new construction is visible from the adjacent roadway, shown (below top) from the west, and (below bottom two) from the east, where the initial structure sits.

Apple Reno iCloud site

Apple Reno iCloud site

Apple Reno iCloud site

Additional work at the pilot facility

Apple has also added new air ducting to the initial structure, which formerly (below top) blew exhaust heat out window-like panes on each side of the building. The new exhaust hoods first appeared in June.

Apple Reno data center site in March


Apple Reno data center site since June


Apple Reno data center site


Apple has 345 acres of land surrounding the buildings now being built, nearly twice the area of its Prineville, Oregon project also now under construction. The Reno site will allow for vast expansion of both data center buildings and supporting structures, including solar fields.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 15
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,388member
    [last image above]

    I like how Apple's parcel of land is smack dab in the middle of the park, making it difficult for their competitors to carve up their own of an equally large or nice size.
  • Reply 2 of 15
    gazoobeegazoobee Posts: 3,754member
    The only cool thing about this article is I'm imagining Daniel driving out there on his motorbike early in the morning, Marlon Brando style, to take the pics. :)
  • Reply 3 of 15
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post



    I like how Apple's parcel of land is smack dab in the middle of the park, making it difficult for their competitors to carve up their own of an equally large or nice size.


    So? There are many more places in the world to build data centers other than the Reno Technology Park. How exactly is Apple's parcel making it difficult for the competitors?

  • Reply 4 of 15
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,388member
    mstone wrote: »
    So? There are many more places in the world to build data centers other than the Reno Technology Park. How exactly is Apple's parcel making it difficult for the competitors?

    ... The idea is that this is competitive real estate, isn't it? That's why they chose North Carolina and Oregon, so forgive me if this is just run of the mill land for technology companies.
  • Reply 5 of 15
    jkichlinejkichline Posts: 1,369member
    It's making it difficult because technology companies will normally gravitate towards a certain area once one technology company is there. Take a look at Maiden, NC and the data centers that are within a few miles of each. In this case, Apple is putting a lot of capital into developing the park in terms of infrastructure which a competitor could then do for much less money. By putting themselves in the middle of the plot, it makes that area less desirable to another data center of significant size, ensuring that Apple reaps the reward from it's investment.
  • Reply 6 of 15
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jkichline View Post



    It's making it difficult because technology companies will normally gravitate towards a certain area once one technology company is there. Take a look at Maiden, NC and the data centers that are within a few miles of each. In this case, Apple is putting a lot of capital into developing the park in terms of infrastructure which a competitor could then do for much less money. By putting themselves in the middle of the plot, it makes that area less desirable to another data center of significant size, ensuring that Apple reaps the reward from it's investment.


    In the case of Maiden, NC, the Facebook and Google data centers are more than an hour's drive from the Apple data center so it is not like they are in the same technology park. It is not as much about the infrastructure as it is about tax incentives and a psychological factors that draw new technology workers to the general location. The only utilities that are important to data centers are fiber and electricity, both of which can be had in abundance if you are a huge technology company. AT&T and Edison or whoever will be happy to provide as much as you want. It isn't like the investment that Apple made in those utility infrastructures is going to be some sort of advantage to other data centers located near by. Especially for the electricity part since Apple is generating their own with solar.

  • Reply 7 of 15
    hottaphottap Posts: 1member
    The new Reno Technology Park is just across the freeway from the much larger Reno Tahoe Industrial Center. I-80 is a main fiber path from Reno to Salt Lake City, and the two sites are sandwiching a large NV Energy Power plant as well.
    The problem of powering, connecting, or siting a new center is not difficult in this case.
  • Reply 8 of 15
    theothergeofftheothergeoff Posts: 2,081member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by hottap View Post



    The new Reno Technology Park is just across the freeway from the much larger Reno Tahoe Industrial Center. I-80 is a main fiber path from Reno to Salt Lake City, and the two sites are sandwiching a large NV Energy Power plant as well.

    The problem of powering, connecting, or siting a new center is not difficult in this case.


    This.... if you want on the information superhighway... you need to have a bundle of dark fiber nearby.


     


    As for the size and layout of the property... given their indication to build effectively an artisan well from an underground aquifer for evaporative cooling, and a solar farm, the layout of the property is likely aligned with water rights and solar reception.  The alignment makes it so no one can build a tall building in your solar path in December.   Being in the middle just seems 'first come first served" and they got the heart of the property so to speak.

  • Reply 9 of 15
    MacProMacPro Posts: 19,697member
    A Scamsung spokesman today said it was untrue, the first large structures are now being erected in Korea. Fandroid fans all over America think Apple should be stopped from building as it might stop Korean interests coming first.
  • Reply 10 of 15
    realisticrealistic Posts: 1,154member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post



    A Scamsung spokesman today said it was untrue, the first large structures are now being erected in Korea. Fandroid fans all over America think Apple should be stopped from building as it might stop Korean interests coming first.


    Just a waste of space, a rather stupid comment, not even remotely amusing. blocked

  • Reply 11 of 15
    jragostajragosta Posts: 10,473member
    I like how Apple's parcel of land is smack dab in the middle of the park, making it difficult for their competitors to carve up their own of an equally large or nice size.

    That's ridiculous - even for you.

    There would be no reason for a competitor to want to build right next door.
  • Reply 12 of 15
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,388member
    jragosta wrote: »
    There would be no reason for a competitor to want to build right next door.

    Well, it's a technology park, after all. Not an Apple park. Sort of a place where any technology company that fit the requirements would build.

    ... :no:
  • Reply 13 of 15
    realisticrealistic Posts: 1,154member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post





    I like how Apple's parcel of land is smack dab in the middle of the park, making it difficult for their competitors to carve up their own of an equally large or nice size.


    Rather lame comment from you TS. Apple, like you or any other company would do, paid the price to buy the piece of land they wanted for whatever reason(s). I doubt they bought to block competitors but even if they did, it is Apple's money to do with as Apple wants..

  • Reply 14 of 15
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,388member
    realistic wrote: »
    Apple, like you or any other company would do, paid the price to buy the piece of land they wanted for whatever reason(s). I doubt they bought to block competitors but even if they did, it is Apple's money to do with as Apple wants..

    Why are you claiming my position is to state otherwise?! :???::no:
  • Reply 15 of 15


    Nice photos....


     


    Quote:


    the site hasn't seen many obvious signs of new construction apart from ongoing dirt movement by a fleet of huge trucks.



    IMO, dirt is moved by Hoovers.  The trucks are moving soil, earth, rocks, & debris.   :)


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