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WNIJ's summary of news items around our state.

Facebook 'Likes' DeKalb With Announcement Of $800 Million Data Center

Facebook DeKalb Data Center Rendering

Facebook is building an $800 million data center in DeKalb. City leaders have been working out the details for months under the secret project name “Ventus.”

DeKalb City Manager Bill Nicklas confirmed the project early Tuesday morning.

According to a news release, the facility will be the 12th Facebook data center in the United States -- and is being touted for its energy efficiency.

"Every kilowatt-hour that is used there will be offset by new kilowatt hours from renewable energy that contributes to the grid," explained Nicklas. "It's a very, very impressive and ambitious project, and from the standpoint of our local government, a might and helpful contribution."

It’s expected to be supported by 100% renewable energy and use 80% less water than the average data center.

The social media company is partnering with the City of DeKalb, the Kishwaukee Water Reclamation District, and Krusinski Construction Company to help design, build and provide support for infrastructure in the area. This includes nearly three miles of water lines, one and a half miles of sewer extension and repaving local roads.

It’s also expected to bring about 100 operational jobs to Illinois, with more than a thousand temporary construction jobs. Nicklas is also optimistic about future collaborations.

"They're going to be there with us to find better ways to help us communicate," he said. "Taxing body to taxing body. Schools, business to business, business to community. We're excited about what can happen and things that we haven't even imagined at this point I think will be possible through this collaboration."

In lieu of a groundbreaking, officials made the announcement on Facebook.

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