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Work well underway on Facebook data center near Papillion

In this Friday, June 16, 2017 photo, equipment drives steel pillars into the ground for where building one will be constructed at a Facebook data center in Papillion.

The Associated Press file photo

Facebook on Monday announced a huge expansion of its under-construction data center in Papillion.

The social media giant said it will break ground on the expansion project in May. It will add four buildings to the two that already are under construction and double the number of acres being used from 144 to 290.

Facebook said in a news release that it expects the expansion to be completed in 2023, and at that point the entire campus will encompass 2.6 million square feet of space.

The company said the expansion will support thousands of construction jobs for several years and will add hundreds of operational positions to the 100-150 already planned. There are more than 1,000 construction workers at the site daily, and Facebook said it already has full-time employees working there, although it did not say how many.

When it originally announced plans for the data center last April, Facebook said it would initially build two 450,000-square-foot buildings with a 70,000-square-foot office building connecting them and expected the center to be up and running by 2020. At the time, it said it might build up to two more buildings on the site near Papillion at the intersection of Capehart Road and Nebraska 50.

In a Facebook post, the company said "it was an easy decision" to expand in Papillion, although it did not offer further explanation.

The company also said Monday that it will increase the amount of power it plans to buy from the Rattlesnake Creek Wind Project in Dixon County from 200 megawatts to 320.

Facebook also said it is partnering with software maker Adobe to help it enter the renewable energy market. Adobe will purchase an additional 10 MW of power from Rattlesnake Creek.

Reach the writer at 402-473-2647 or molberding@journalstar.com.

On Twitter @LincolnBizBuzz.

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