I’m excited to announce today that we are announcing the launch of two new Microsoft data centers in Cheyenne, Wyoming – one in Cheyenne Business Parkway and one in Bison Business Park – that will enable us to track the growth and demand for to expand and support our digital services in our data center region West Central US. Cheyenne has hosted Microsoft’s cloud infrastructure services since 2012, and this expansion will allow us to continue providing services to our existing and new customers.
The two new data centers will be built with sustainable design and operation in mind, and will help ensure Microsoft’s commitment to be carbon negative. We are making significant efforts to conserve water and preserving Cheyenne’s water resources is our top priority. Our current and new data centers will use adiabatic coolingthat uses outside air instead of water for cooling at temperatures below 85 degrees Fahrenheit. This process uses less electricity and up to 90 percent less water than other water-based cooling systems. We have already invested over $ 500,000 in sustainability grants to local organizations that help preserve Wyoming’s natural environment, including Crow Creek Revival, which aims to promote, improve, restore, and revitalize the area’s most important watershed.
Not only are our data centers built with sustainability in mind, but Microsoft’s presence in Wyoming will have real economic and social impact on residents. We currently employ over 200 people and suppliers in the area and this expansion will allow us to create even more jobs for the community, including more than 700 jobs during construction. In addition to building data centers, Microsoft is investing in new water, sewer, and road infrastructure to facilitate access to the Bison Business Park, which will also help new business growth in Wyoming.
“The growth of the data center industry in Wyoming has been spearheaded by Microsoft and is becoming a major sign of the further diversification of our economy. I appreciate Microsoft’s commitment to Wyoming and thank them for the benefits they have brought to multiple sectors of our economy, “said Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon. “Governor Mead was the inspiration to bring Microsoft’s first data center to the state in 2012. The incentives that set this train in motion are working. This is a sector of our growing economy that is still gaining momentum. More and more companies want to build in Wyoming in the coming years. “
“Additional data centers are a big win for Cheyenne and the whole of Laramie County,” said Cheyenne Mayor Patrick Collins. “This brings more high-tech opportunities, a qualified workforce and an expansion of Microsoft’s existing economic influence on our community.”
By expanding Microsoft’s digital capabilities in Wyoming, we can meet demand for new and existing customers in the area who can drive job creation and business opportunity.
Invest in the community
Through Microsoft TechSpark and our Datacenter Community Development Program, we’ve worked closely with Wyoming organizations to develop solutions that benefit the state.
- K12 Computer Science Opportunity: We have partnered with the Wyoming Department of Education to deliver ongoing computer science training to more than 30 school districts across the state, affecting more than 60,000 K-12 students. We are also working with Code.org and the University of Wyoming to build the capacity of hundreds of K12 teachers to provide computer science classes to thousands of students across the state. Microsoft’s TEALS High School Computer Science program has also partnered with six Wyoming high schools to build quality computer science education for approximately 500 students in Laramie, Gillette, Douglas, Casper, and Buffalo.
- Creation of high quality jobs: Microsoft has invested over $ 500,000 in building a technology sector in Wyoming that is focused on job creation and workforce development, and nurturing the Wyoming startup community. Through a startup accelerator called gBETA Cheyenne, we helped 15 Wyoming startups raise nearly $ 3 million in investment capital to grow their businesses and local tech jobs. We have also sponsored startup competitions in Laramie, Cheyenne, and the Wind River Reservation to raise awareness and mentoring of budding Wyoming startups.
- Increasing broadband access: We are focused on making the Internet more accessible to communities, creating even more educational and economic opportunities. That’s why we’ve invested over $ 350,000 in rolling out free WiFi in key community locations like Downtown Cheyenne Depot, COMEA Shelter, and two Laramie County’s Public Library locations to serve more than 100,000 visitors and residents annually to stay connected. We also partnered with Vistabeam through Microsoft’s Airband program to provide expanded broadband access to 116,600 Wyomingites in the area, including a previously unserved rural population of 19,000 who did not have broadband access.
- Further training opportunities: We have invested over $ 1 million to start three adult education programs to respond to the challenges of COVID-19, including a Microsoft Datacenter Academy at Laramie County Community College, a technical education program with the Array School of Technology and Design as well the Upskill Wyoming program. These opportunities provide Wyoming residents with scholarships and educational opportunities that enable them to find better-paying jobs remotely and in the local area.
We look forward to continuing to serve Wyoming and its local customers and community members through our new data centers and expanding the availability of our cloud services. For more information about Microsoft Azure and the possibilities in the US data center region West Central, visit the Global Microsoft Azure infrastructure Website.