A new $26 million data center will be constructed in Shakopee, the southern suburb that has aggressively courted new business.

Dallas-based Compass Datacenters LLC will develop the facility for Savvis, a division of CenturyLink, which will use the expansion to enhance its customers' access to its co-location, cloud, managed-hosting and network services.

The city defines a data center as a specialized environment that is necessary for computing systems. They are often sought after by municipalities because they provide "must-have infrastructure for computing systems of growing companies," jobs and add to the tax base," the city said Tuesday.

And Compass Datacenters, which will own the land in Shakopee, is in the business of developing them.

Shakopee Mayor Brad Tabke said in a statement that, "Savvis’ data center brings new, highly technical and well-paying jobs to the area. We also hope it will attract additional companies who want to be near the extensive data and power infrastructure the facility brings to the area.”

CenturyLink is expected to create about 18 jobs at the new data center.

Compass has created a master plan for a campus in Shakopee that supports the potential construction of three additional 25,000-square-foot data centers representing an ultimate investment of about $90 million.

“We evaluated a number of potential locations for our first data center campus in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area, and Shakopee is a perfect fit,” said Chris Crosby, CEO of Compass Datacenters, in a statement.

The Savvis data center, expected to open in spring of 2014. The complex will be built to support 4.8 megawatts of IT load within 100,000 square feet, with Savvis occupying 13,000 square feet.

Talks continue between the city of Shakopee and Compass Datacenters regarding what incentives will be extended for the project.

Janet Moore covers commercial real estate for the Star Tribune.

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