Greensboro officials give ImpactData grant for ‘Dream Center’ data center and education space

GREENSBORO, NC – August 16, 2022 – The Greensboro City Council unanimously approved a $530,359 incentive grant to a digital infrastructure firm to locate a “Dream Center” at Gateway Research Park.

Over a four-year period, ImpactData of Atlanta plans to invest $108.5 million to build the center and create 28 new jobs.

The average wage for the new full-time positions would be about $60,714, plus benefits. The lowest-paying job would earn about $35,000 a year, said Marshall Yandle, the city’s economic development manager.

The 115,000-square-foot project would include a data center, an innovation center owned and programmed by N.C. A&T and a lab dedicated to workforce training and community engagement.

“Whenever you look at research around economic development, high-speed connectivity is an important part of attracting clients and businesses to the area,” ImpactData CEO Terry Comer told the council. “Ultimately, you’re bringing resource-level connectivity — 100 megabit download speeds — into the community.”

Eventually, Comer said the company could build additional levels of connectivity from the center to local residences.

The minority-owned company looks to build these “Dream Centers” alongside colleges and universities, particularly HBCUs.

In a letter from A&T Chancellor Harold L. Martin Sr., he said the project “will allow the university to expand academic and research offerings in high-demand areas, such as cybersecurity and engineering, as well as further expand our growing presence in east Greensboro.”

“It would be a complement to the current businesses that are there in the area,” Councilwoman Sharon Hightower said.

Source:  Greensboro News & Record, Kenwyn Caranna, August 16, 2022