Seattle-based Microsoft Corp. has announced it will build its next U.S. datacenter region – East U.S. 3 – in south Fulton County.

According to a news release from Select Fulton, the county’s economic and workforce development arm, it will be located on property straddling the cities of East Point and Palmetto. Microsoft’s facility is expected to stimulate the area’s economy with new jobs and local business growth and also will be located in neighboring Douglas County.

“This announcement is another testament to the economic vitality of Fulton County and our strength to grow even during a pandemic,” Robb Pitts, the Fulton County Board of Commissioners’ chair, said in the release. “It also reflects Fulton County’s leadership in Georgia by embracing companies that are bringing much needed permanent and temporary jobs to our county.”

Microsoft picked this location because it meets the company’s criteria for new datacenter sites, which includes proximity to population centers, a broad, reliable and stable power source, multiple high-capacity network connections, a large pool of qualified labor and affordable and clean energy.

“We couldn’t be happier to support and welcome an established company like Microsoft to Fulton County,” Michel Turpeau, the Development Authority of Fulton County’s chair, said in the release. “Their long-term investment is evidence of our skilled workforce and attractive existing infrastructure, both of which will continue to prove critical in the coming months and years.”

East U.S. 3 will provide "world-class data security and privacy as well as faster access and the broadest range of Microsoft Azure cloud services to customers in the immediate region” for customers worldwide, the release stated.

“We have worked hard to build a vibrant community to attract investment and growth. Having a brand name like Microsoft locate in our city speaks to the quality of our community,” East Point Mayor Deana Holiday Ingraham said in the release. "The city of East Point is beyond excited to announce this new data center which will add to the diversity of industry, services and workers found in our community. I always say there’s no point like East Point and this is a testament to that.”

Palmetto Mayor Clark Boddie added, “We extend a warm welcome to Microsoft and are excited that they selected the city of Palmetto as a location for their data center. This development will generate more jobs and enhance our community. We look forward to all the transformational impacts this development will have on the city of Palmetto.”

This news follows Microsoft’s May announcement to bring a cloud computing and artificial-intelligence business to Fulton and fully occupy the new Atlantic Yards development in Atlantic Station. The company is investing $75 million, creating 1,500 new jobs and leasing 523,000 square feet, making it the largest new office lease in metro Atlanta and one of the biggest in the nation since the COVID-19 pandemic started in March.

“We couldn’t be happier to welcome a globally recognized company like Microsoft to Fulton County,” District 1 Fulton Commissioner Liz Hausmann, sponsor of economic development on behalf of the board, said in the release. “When a high-profile company like this invests so heavily in our community, it reflects our business friendly climate and adds to the many industries that call Fulton County home.”

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