The Midwest is not only the United States’ largest producer of corn, home to a state fair that was featured in the New York Times Bestseller, “1,000 Places To See Before You Die”, and the birth place of Twinkies, but so much more. It has been attracting a considerable amount of attention in the technology industry lately. Due to its premier location, it has been flagged as one of the best locations to store your company’s vital information. Here are our top five reasons why the Midwest is heads and tails above the rest when it comes to data centers.
- Low power costs – Unlike the coasts, the Midwest has become extremely progressive in both energy production and distribution. According to a recent Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBL) study, electricity costs around 1.4 cents per kilowatt hour in the Midwest versus 4.5 cents in California and Connecticut. Two of the primary states where LightEdge has constructed facilities have soared in the power arena because of their low operating and utility costs.
Iowa, home of LightEdge’s flagship data center, possesses some of the least expensive power in the US, and ranks second in the nation for harnessing wind energy with over 20% of its energy created through green resources*.
*The Gazette, August 15, 2012
In Missouri, where our newest facility resides in SubTropolis Technology Center’s underground mines, we get the benefit of tapping into Kansas City Power & Light’s utility costs that are also some of the lowest in the country. Kansas City, specifically, was ranked #2 in the US for enterprise data center operating affordability.
- Risk-free location – The majority of the central US has zero hurricane hazard and very low seismic risk in comparison to either coasts’ high risk of natural disasters or manmade destruction from terror threats. The Greater Kansas City area itself has been consistently ranked as one of the best for constant, uninterrupted power service, so the chances of an energy blackout are minimal. The area has also been considered to have one of the world’s most advanced telecommunications networks, which makes it a focal point for both long-haul and transcontinental fiber networks. You don’t want to chance leaving the foundation of your business vulnerable to a disaster.
- Easily accessible – When travel time is being taken into account, you can’t get more centrally located than the Midwest. Businesses on the East and West coasts can take advantage of its location by commuting effortlessly from anywhere in the Continental US. Storing your data here means you’re nearby major Interstates like I-80 or I-35, or only a mere 3-4 hour flight away from the Midwest at even the farthest points in the country if you prefer to travel via airplane.
- Large talent pool – Often referred to as the “Silicon Prairie”, the region is rich with a highly educated and skilled technology labor force with that famous “Midwestern work ethic”. It’s a great draw to the labor force because of the drastically lower costs of living than on either coast, and boasts wonderful opportunities for technical education and training. You want the peace of mind knowing that your crucial data lies in the hands of the best and brightest around.
- Growth potential – Cities all across the Midwest have been named major up and coming areas to settle down, expand your career and raise a family. The area is also seeing a large number of technology companies (and data centers) migrate in and plant their roots. LightEdge is proud to say we were the first to build a facility in Altoona, Iowa, and have since been followed by the likes of Google, Microsoft and Facebook as the area turns into a data center mecca.
As you consider your options for colocation, we encourage you to explore the heartland for the security, reliability and growth potential your business depends on to continue raising the bar.