SPEDA Announces Completion of Fiber Optic Data Center in Valley Oak | New
A new fiber-optic data center serving the entire Valley Oak shopping complex is complete and functional, an initiative of the Somerset-Pulaski Economic Development Authority (SPEDA) that will provide state-of-the-art communications service to businesses along the Ky 80-461 corridor.
SPEDA President and CEO Chris Girdler said the new data center is the most advanced of its kind in Kentucky. SPEDA has built a new facility on the property where a rusty small trailer once housed obsolete communications equipment. The new building is larger, under the roof, and is surrounded by a security fence and cameras to protect the fiber optic network housed inside.
The construction of this data center is part of a larger effort to provide support to existing businesses in the Valley Oak area, Girdler said. SPEDA also built an overflow truck parking lot and installed signage to help solve traffic congestion issues in Valley Oak, and opened a food truck yard to provide local dining options for employees during their breaks.
“If we don’t regularly listen to existing businesses and help them meet their needs, we can never hope to achieve the growth we want to see in Somerset-Pulaski County,” said Girdler. “This data center will provide better communication support for these businesses and will be an invaluable resource for new businesses that choose to locate in Valley Oak or our new SPEDA Commerce Park in the same area.
The data center is part of the Ky. 80-461 road extension project, which includes the installation of a trefoil interchange at the intersection of Ky. 80 and 461, the Ky. 461 extension to four lanes from the intersection at Buck Creek, and construction of new entrances to the Valley Oak shopping complex. The project is funded in part by a federal BUILD grant of $ 25 million, the total cost of which is estimated at $ 69.3 million.
Formerly known as the Garner property in the Pine Hill and Barnesburg Road area, SPEDA Commerce Park is a 142-acre development in the Ky. 80-461 area that will offer certified build-ready sites to industrial prospects. The park’s first tenant, the Kentucky National Guard, announced in August plans to build a new regional readiness center and field maintenance workshop on 18 acres.
The fiber optic network inside the data center was made possible through partnerships with several private entities, Girdler said. SPEDA joined forces with the information technology team of the Rural Development Center to carry out the project. The Center is the main oversight body, managing the construction of the building and the maintenance of the equipment.
Girdler thanked the Centre’s IT team for their supervision and advice in building a data center that will provide adequate communication support now and in the future for this industrial area.
“The Center for Rural Development has been an exceptional partner in guiding our efforts to build this fiber optic data center,” said Girdler. “Richard Taylor, Shannon Carter and Scott Surber have exceptional expertise in this area and we are very grateful for their help in ensuring that we are providing the best service to our existing businesses and industries, while preparing the area for growth. “
Taylor, who is the Center’s executive vice president, said his organization has been involved in the technology side of Valley Oak since its inception.
“We are delighted to continue to partner with SPEDA to oversee the construction of this data center,” said Taylor. “It is important to allow tenants in the fleet to have a variety of physical cable trays as well as access to multiple carriers, as more and more companies seek to implement technologies such as SD-WAN that require the diversity of operators to be truly effective. “
Girdler also thanked the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet and Representative Shawna Shuffett for their assistance in overseeing the project, as well as SPEDA Executive Director Jessica Carlton, who led the funding for the project and made many trips to the site to help during construction.
“This data center would not have been possible without the help and collaboration of so many organizations across the community,” said Girdler. “I am very grateful to each of them for their support, as well as to the SPEDA team and board of directors for helping to realize the bold vision we have to make Somerset-Pulaski County the best place in Kentucky to do business. “