New Britain's Innovation Park enters Phase 2 with high-tech computing center

Published on Monday, 29 July 2019 16:31
Written by Karla Santos


NEW BRITAIN – Although New Britain’s Energy & Innovation Park is still preparing to build its first phase, the Park has announced that after hailing action Monday by Connecticut Innovations (CI), it has secured its second phase, which is the computing center.

The first phase of the $1 billion green-energy and high-speed data center complex is a $100 million - 20-megawatt fuel cell. The first phase will include 44 Doosan fuel cells. The construction will begin in the fall and the project will take place at the Stanley Works campus.

“Last year, we launched this project to transform the historic home of Stanley Black & Decker into a first class center for high-tech jobs, high-speed data processing, and clean energy,” Mark Wick, a partner with EIP, LLC said in a press release. “Today’s action by Connecticut Innovations should be the final step in the development process.”

According to the announcing statement, the company will spend $300 million in Phase 2 to build and renovate the data center complex to ‘white space’ configuration, which will include high performing computers and servers to make a high performance computing center.

“CI just helped secure the data center’s competitive edge by approving a measure that will exempt the computing equipment from the state sales and use tax for 10 years,” Wick said in the release. “This will put us on par with 23 other states that are competing every day to attract national data center operators to their sites, and it will apply only to the computing equipment after nearly $400 million is spent on the bricks and mortar. This is the sign of a great public-private partnership, and we are very pleased.”

More than 3,000 direct and indirect jobs are expected to be created by EIP in the next 20 years. The project is also expected to generate $45 million in tax revenues for New Britain and more than $200 million for the State of Connecticut.

“High performance computing centers fuel the 21st century economy and attract many other IT companies to their campuses,” Governor Ned Lamont said in the press release. “Given Connecticut’s proximity to major metropolitan areas and the needs of our municipal, state and private sector business clusters for these high performance computing services, we can now compete with other states and transform an underutilized industrial complex into a modern IT campus that will generate significant local and state tax revenues, and high paying IT and related service jobs.”

The Doosan fuel cells units are expected to arrive to the site in the first quarter of 2020 with full commercial operation by the third quarter of the same year.

“In addition to the data center component, the EIP will be a Center for Energy Innovation,” House Speaker Joe Aresimowicz said in the release. “I am encouraged that the EIP has pledged to work closely with the Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology, the universities and other Connecticut companies to develop new energy technologies to capture carbon from fuel cells, make electricity from waste heat, identify new ways to store energy and help Connecticut be at the cutting edge of technology development.”

The release said that EIP is expected to use waste heat from the fuel cells in a ‘heating and cooling loop’ to serve surrounding businesses and help reduce the carbon footprint of the project.

“We have all worked very hard to make the New Britain site attractive and competitive,” Mayor Erin Stewart said in the release. “It has low cost space, onsite power generation, access to trained talent, predictable tax treatment and quality connectivity that we believe we will attract significant national interest and transform New Britain into the New Hardware City.”

Posted in The Bristol Press, Manufacturing on Monday, 29 July 2019 16:31. Updated: Monday, 29 July 2019 16:33.