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Yahoo! celebrates upstate expansion

Ashley Hirtzel
Yahoo! officials are joined by Lt. Governor Duffy and various lawmakers to celebrate expansion.

Construction is underway on Yahoo's second data center in Lockport. Lieutenant Governor Robert Duffy joined Yahoo officials in a groundbreaking ceremony for the new facility last Friday.

The $170 million expansion will bring 115 new jobs to its data and customer care center, as well as 100 construction jobs. The second center will take up more than 240,000 square feet once completed.

Duffy says the internet giant’s data center will help keep young people living and working in New York State.

“The average wage for these jobs is about $50,000 per year. They run the whole gamut. You have engineers, you have IT people, and you have people that work in site facilities. They are well-paying and sustainable jobs that keep families going,” said Duffy.

The New York Power Authority will provide 7.2 megawatts of subsidized electricity for the project, the equivalent of powering over 5,000 homes. Yahoo’s Vice President of Data Center Operations Rich Kroplf says low-cost hydropower drove the company’s decision to expand in Lockport. He says the company is proud of its Western New York presence.

“We came here for many reasons. The cool climate that allows us to run our state-of-the-art data centers, clean reliable hydropower, great incentives, and most importantly a very talented and skilled workforce,” said Kroplf.

Town of Lockport Economic Development Director David Kinyon says Yahoo’s presence is driving a lot of interest from other companies interested in relocating to the area. Yahoo built its first center in Lockport in 2010. The second center is expected to be completed by fall of 2014.

WBFO/Western New York reporter for the Innovation Trail.