Facebook announced plans this week to build its second owned and operated data center in the State of North Carolina.

In a joint announcement with North Carolina Governor Bev Purdue, the social networking giant said it chose Forest City in Rutherford County for the site of a $450 million data center after a detailed search for locations along the east coast.

“The team we will hire here will help us provide faster, more reliable and more robust service to people around the world who rely on Facebook to connect and share,” Tom Furlong, Facebook’s director of site operations, said in a statement.

The data center is expected to create more than 250 construction jobs during its 18-month building phase. When completed, it will employ about 35-45 full-time and contract workers. Facebook said additional construction phases may be undertaken in the future, depending on business growth.

North Carolina has won a number of high profile data centers in recent years, including facilities for such industry giants as American Express, Apple, Google, and IBM. Tech companies are attracted to the state because of its relatively inexpensive electricity rates and its moderate climate, which does not have cold or hot extremes that result in higher cooling or heating demand.

The state has also been very aggressive in offering data center operators tax and various other financial incentives as it looks to generate jobs in regions, which have been hit hard by the recession and by a loss of jobs to less expensive labor markets around the world.

“We are proud that Facebook chose to make North Carolina a ‘friend,’” Governor Purdue said in a statement. “The investment and jobs at the data center will be a boon to that region of the state, and will help confirm North Carolina’s distinction as a global business destination.”

In January, Facebook announced plans to build its first owned and operated data center in Prineville, Ore. Up until now Facebook has primarily housed its servers in co-location facilities.



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