Facebook is moving forward with an expansion of its Prineville, Oregon data center earlier than expected thanks to a little help from lawmakers and a much needed power upgrade.
Data centers are mission critical for Facebook, which is seeing its membership skyrocket which translates into increased capacity.
According to The Oregonian, when the company announced its Prineville plans 18 months ago, Facebook membership was only 350 million. That number has more than doubled to 750 million today.
When Facebook opened its first wholly owned data center in April, the company left open the possibility of adding a second facility. However, the issue was capacity: A second data center would have added more demands to the power grid than the region could handle.
The newspaper reports that lobbying by local economic development boosters, Oregon’s congressional delegation, and cold weather that taxed the community’s electrical grid, persuaded the Bonneville Power Administration to add a transformer in Prineville by 2013, at least a year earlier than scheduled.
Facebook’s second data center in North Carolina is under construction and is part of the company’s transition to shift its servers onto company-owned facilities.