Digital Realty , a leading global provider of data center, colocation, and interconnection solutions, hosted Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker, state legislators and local leaders at its landmark 350 East Cermak Road facility in Chicago earlier today to commemorate newly enacted tax incentives for the data center industry in Illinois. Digital Realty, along with a coalition of data center operators and providers, the Illinois Chamber of Commerce and the labor community, worked together alongside lawmakers on the new legislation which exempts qualifying data centers from certain state and local taxes. This legislation is expected to generate data center demand and drive economic growth, reestablishing Illinois as a leading national data center destination.
“We congratulate Governor Pritzker, the General Assembly, the labor-business coalition, and many others who had the foresight to appreciate how important these incentives are to retain and attract data center business to the great state of Illinois,” said Digital Realty Chief Executive Officer A. William Stein, who attended the event. “These incentives for data center customers are a win-win that will create 21st century jobs and serve as an economic catalyst for the state of Illinois. With these incentives, Illinois will be even better positioned to directly benefit from the growth of the digital economy and attract new talent and industry to the state.”
Under the new legislation, qualifying data centers must invest, or have invested, at least $250 million, meet green building standards and employ 20 or more full-time employees. Additional incentives are also available for data centers located in economically disadvantaged areas. This legislation is expected to attract new data center customers to Illinois and will also benefit existing data center customers by incentivizing them to refresh their investments in high-value, high-tech equipment. With this new law, Illinois has further positioned itself as a nationally leading data center market, with competitive pricing, robust power infrastructure, a skilled workforce, extensive fiber infrastructure and a low risk of natural disasters.
The new incentives are designed to benefit local communities through high-quality job creation, economic stimulus and neighborhood revitalization. Specifically, they aim to drive capital improvements that will ultimately increase Illinois’ tax base. In addition, data centers create innovation hubs that bring high-paying jobs in the construction and IT industries.
As an Illinois data center operator since 2005 with 3.3 million square feet of data center capacity in the state, Digital Realty welcomes the benefits for its nearly 400 Illinois data center customers—and all Illinoisans – and looks forward to continued growth in the state. With data centers already located in Elk Grove Village, Franklin Park, Northlake and downtown Chicago, along with a wide selection of available product offerings, including the Digital Realty Internet Exchange (DRIX) and Service Exchange, Digital Realty anticipates an influx of demand for data center capacity, including from key Chicago industries such as manufacturing, transportation and technology.