States in the Northwester United States offer some of the lowest power rates in the nation, making them a hotspot for data centers and other energy-intensive industries. Looking to tap into some of the data center development prosperity seen in neighboring states like Oregon, Washington, and Nevada, the Idaho legislature recently passed a sales tax exemption for all data center equipment. Meta seized the opportunity, announcing an 800 million campus is designed to offer 960,000 square feet of space in Kuna, Idaho, just outside Boise.
The new data center will create 1,200 jobs during construction and 100 permanent jobs once it opens. It will also anchor what the city is calling the East Kuna Industrial Area. As part of the deal, Meta will construct a $50 million water treatment plant run by the city and partner with the local Kuna school system.
While not a source of major employment, data centers can be a major boon for smaller municipalities like Kuna, making them hotly courted by townships and states. Northwestern states are ideal with stables climates, a ready workforce, cheap power, and a low risk of natural disaster. Major tech companies continue to expand their physical footprint with dozens of new data centers in the works. Meta alone has 17 data center campuses housed in over 40 million square feet that cost the company more than $20 billion. Just a fraction of that investment is a game-changer for a town like Kuna with a population below 25,000. That type of money is no small potato.