Data centers destined for North San Jose
STACK Infrastructure is proposing a new project with a manufacturing facility and data centers at a property neighboring their recently completed data center project at 2001 Fortune Drive in North San Jose. Photo by Joseph Geha.

    The San Jose City Council unanimously approved plans this week for an advanced manufacturing facility and data centers, adding to the growing hub of tech facilities and workplaces in North San Jose.

    Denver-based STACK Infrastructure is planning to demolish two existing industrial buildings on a nearly 10-acre lot, including a former Olympus service center, and put up more than 650,000 square-feet of new structures.

    A new four-story manufacturing facility will be about 136,000 square feet, and two four-story data centers will total about 522,000 square feet, on a lot at the southeast corner of Trade Zone Boulevard and Ringwood Avenue.

    The project also includes the buildout of a 100 mega-volt ampere electrical substation, and a 150,000 square-foot parking garage with about 300 spaces. The company recently completed another roughly 400,000 square-foot data center project next door at 2001 Fortune Drive.

    This digital rendering shows what an advanced manufacturing facility proposed by STACK Infrastructure could look like in North San Jose when completed. Image courtesy of San Jose.

    “This will expand and make a very large combined data center and job center there on the corner,” District 4 Councilmember David Cohen said at the meeting. “I’m excited about repurposing that old Olympus site that has been abandoned for a number of years.”

    Cohen represents the area where the project will be built. He and Mayor Matt Mahan both supported the project in part due to the jobs they hope it will bring to the area.

    The company projected 700 union construction jobs will be filled to build the facilities, and nearly 200 permanent employees will work at the data centers and manufacturing facility in total.

    “We’re all relying obviously on having an ever-growing number of data centers as we move forward, and I’m looking forward to North San Jose being a location for several new ones in the years ahead,” Cohen said.

    In addition to the substation to power the facilities during normal operations, the site will have 39 backup power generators.

    Miles Kersten, the company’s head of development, said the substation will use 100% renewable energy from PG&E, but the backup generators will be diesel-powered.

    District 10 Councilmember Arjun Batra said he would prefer to see the company use a more sustainable option for backup power, such as battery storage.

    “I think it would be inconsistent with a highly technical company coming here with a highly technical activity,” Batra said of the diesel-burning generators. “I think it would not be consistent with our image or your image to have the diesel stuff.”

    A building that formerly housed an Olympus service center at 2400 Ringwood Drive in North San Jose will be demolished to make way for a new data center and manufacturing facility proposed by STACK Infrastructure. Photo by Joseph Geha.

    Kersten said because of the “critical nature” of the data center operations and the need to have backup power that runs uninterrupted, diesel is the best option, but noted the company is exploring other options for future projects.

    Cohen declined a request from Batra to require the developer explore other options for this project.

    “I don’t think we’re at that point yet where you could have enough batteries on site to power the entire data center in the event of a PG&E outage,” Cohen said.

    The project will also require 156 trees be removed from the land. The developer is only planning to replace 47 with 24-inch box trees, and will pay $326,275 worth of “in-lieu” fees to the city, to go toward replanting other trees.

    Some planning commissioners previously expressed concern over the number of trees being removed and not replaced, and noted the city has ineffectively managed its tree replacement program while the city’s tree canopy cover is shrinking.

    In a deal worked out with Cohen, Kersten said the company will toss in an extra $40,000 toward the District 4 “One Thousand Tree Project” fund, an effort started by Cohen last year to plant 1,000 trees in 1,000 days in the district.

    Kersten said construction could begin as soon as August, and the project would be built in phases. The first data center could be finished by the end of 2025, with a final project completion target of June 2026.

    Contact Joseph Geha at [email protected] or @josephgeha16 on Twitter.

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