Google breaks ground on first-ever Arizona facility. What to know about the $600M data center

Arizona Gov. Katie Hobbs announces that Google is building a $600 million data center in Mesa during a news conference at The Studios at Mesa City Center on Sept. 6, 2023, in Mesa.

Google executives announced the company has broken ground on a new $600 million data center in Mesa's tech corridor on Wednesday.

The center will be the first physical presence of Google in the state. It will also use "state-of-the-art technology to air cool the facility." "We will not be using water-based cooling” to keep the center cool, said Joe Kava, Google's vice president for data centers.

The facility plays a "critical role" in growing its cloud business and the company's AI innovations. The Mesa data center will help "power" digital services like its search services, maps, Gmail and Google Cloud, among other services.

The company also announced it will launch a new Google Cloud region, to bring its cloud services closer to its customers in the Phoenix region.

The Google development "will have a ripple effect that is felt throughout the Valley," Mesa Mayor John Giles said.

Like any other city, Mesa wants to create more jobs. People like to "knock down data centers" for the low employment numbers, Giles said, but construction of the facility is good for employers. The center will need regular construction updates as new technology advances for data centers, Giles said.

About 1,200 construction workers will build the first phase of Google's data center campus, Kava said at Wednesday's announcement.

Staff gave site plan approval for one 288,530-square-foot data center building in July.

The construction of a Google data center is years in the making. In 2019, the City Council approved a development agreement with the internet giant that included a property tax break of $16 million over 25 years. It also required the first 250,000 square feet to be finished by July 2025.

City Manager Chris Brady told The Arizona Republic he's confident Google will meet the timeline obligations outlined in the development agreement.

In 2019, the city estimated the project would bring $156 million in total tax revenue.

The facilities are planned on 187 acres on the northwest corner of Elliot and Sossaman roads. As of 2019. Google was expected to spend $1 billion to build 750,000 square feet by July 2029.

Data centers in southeast Mesa near or along the Elliot Technology Corridor have gained momentum throughout the year. Most recently, a Utah-based data center developer purchased 165 acres of state land for $62.7 million. It will join other companies like Apple and Meta that all plan to build in the city.

Google has a goal to have net-zero emissions across its operations by 2030. The company is committed to replenishing 120% of the water it consumes by improving local watershed health.

As part of those efforts, Google announced a donation of $150,000 to help fund Salt River Projects efforts to improve watershed resiliency and reduce wildfire risk for surrounding rural communities. The watershed provides water for about 2.5 million people in metro Phoenix, said Patty Likens, a spokesperson for SRP.

Reporter Maritza Dominguez covers Mesa and Gilbert and can be reached at or 480-271-0646. Follow her on X, formerly Twitter: @maritzacdom.

This article originally appeared on Arizona Republic: What we know about new $600M Google data center in Mesa