Groundbreaking Held Last Week At New Data Center Site In Frederick County

It’s located at the former Eastalco site in Buckeystown.

Frederick, Md. (KM) – The ground was broken last week for a data center campus at the site of theĀ  former Eastalco Plant in Buckeystown. The 2200-acre parcel is being developed by Quantum Loophole, a developer of gigawatt scale, data center communities.

Richard Paul-Hus, Vice President of Business Development, says the company will not construct the buildings on the site, but provide infrastructure. “We sell land, power, water and fiber optics,” he says.

Paul-Hus says road construction at the site is underway. “We are also going to begin building the water and sewer And we’re going kicking off very shortly our fiber optic project. We’re kicking that off on crossing the Potomac down in Leesburg up kind of close to Point of Rocks bridge,” he says.

The Frederick County location will be connected to a data center in Ashburn, Virginia. “Whereas the roads and everything obviously start now, and start preparing the land for development of building, the fiber will come in closer to when those buildings are built and ready,” he says.

Paul-Hus says Aligned Data Center will be moving to the property, and other companies will follow.

Eastalco was the location of an aluminum smelting plant, and could have left behind some industrial chemicals or other wastes. Paul-Hus says the US Environmental Protection Agency has said no further action by Quantum Loophole is needed. “Where the land is in terms of contamination in the core area  where the smelter was and waste disposal sites, we’re required to maintain some soil caps over some areas. But that’s very manageable That’s very typical of development in old industrial areas,’ he says.

Quantum Loophole will make this site environmentally friendly as many data centers use a lot of water. “We’re trying to work with some technology companies to find ways to mitigate the use of water in data centers,” says Paul-Hus.

There are also plans to put more trees into the ground. “We’re going to be replacing many more trees than we interrupt,” he says. As for trees that need to be cut down, Paul-Hus says “we going to try to replant those trees, and add additional  trees to any cutting of forest or old growth trees.”

Paul-Hus says other plantings will take place. “We’ll be adding a lot of pollinator plants to accommodate bees,” he says. It’s all part of a Trees and Bees plan.

By Kevin McManus