Hall County Approves Data Centers as Conditional Use | Grand Island Local News

Hall County commissioners on Tuesday unanimously approved the data centers as a conditional use of the agricultural zone.

The Regional Planning Commission approved the recommendation for the change on July 6.

The change, following a request by owner Michael Seda, will allow New York-based VCV Digital to apply for a permit to bring a data center site to Hall County, the regional planner said. Chad Nabity. A data center is “essentially a warehouse for computers,” Nabity said. It is a prefabricated structure that is brought in and placed on a foundation.

VCV President Matthew Feast said on July 6 that VCV wanted to set up a “mobile” data center that would look like a “modified shipping container” with heavy-duty HVAC systems to keep equipment cool. inside at a constant temperature.

These facilities must be near an electrical substation as they can use between 10 and 100 megawatts of electricity.

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The proposed VCV data center for Hall County would use 12.5 megawatts.

Nabity said he received no verbal opposition to the change.

He noted that data centers raise some noise concerns.

“There are a lot of AC units out there,” Nabity said. “These things can be manipulated with a conditional use permit, to impose noise limitations or that sort of thing.”

He compared it to a grain dryer, which moves “similar amounts of air”.

The permitting process will allow commissioners to consider conditions such as distance from property lines or neighbors when an application is made.

“The citation is one of those things that becomes important with this,” Nabity said.

Commissioner Pam Lancaster thanked VCV for “considering our county for your business.”

“We talk about those kinds of things, and we think those would be great businesses to have in our county,” she said. “I don’t know how your decision was made, but I appreciate the fact that you wanted to be part of Hall County.”

John Skalla, who selects and develops the site for VCV, said Hall County is important for data transmission across Nebraska.

“Nebraska is a state we’ve wanted to do business in for a long time,” he said. “A lot of data moves east to west, and everything goes through Omaha and the state, almost like a rail yard.”

He added: “This is of strategic importance for digital connectivity.”

Improvements will be made to the property where the data center will be located, Skalla said, and the project will create local jobs.

“We haven’t finished the design yet, but local contractors would be contracted for this construction,” he said. “Any kind of technical work, we will try to coordinate with economic development and the Chamber, and integrate these technicians into our operations.”

He added, “We really want to leverage the community.”

The definition added to the county regulations reads as follows:

“A data center or other facility used to house computer systems and associated components such as telecommunications and storage systems, encryption systems, power supplies, and proprietary performance management systems (including generators) and equipment used for the transformation, transmission distribution or management of electricity (including substations), Internet-related equipment and services, data communication connections, environmental controls and security devices, site structures and features, and related uses.”

Ramon J. Espinoza