Huge jobs boost with Echelon development

By Maurice Garvey

New Irish company Echelon is to create 1,100 jobs with the €1bn development of two data centres in Clondalkin and Arklow.

Up to 910 jobs, of which 560 in Clondalkin will be created during the construction phase at the two sites - once operational they will employ 100 people in Clondalkin and 90 in Arklow.

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An artist impression of the data centre in Clondalkin

Echelon has secured planning permission for a state-of-the-art 44,000 sq.m data centre in Clondalkin Industrial Estate.

Phase 1 of the construction of the Clondalkin site has already begun.

The 35 acre site is located beside the M50 and the Grand Canal, less than five minutes from Grange Castle, Profile Park and Parkwest.

Niall Molloy, CEO of Echelon, said the provision of customisable, scalable data centre facilities is key to the continuing growth of the digital economy and they expect to win global clients from social media, e-commerce, internet of things and digital broadcasting sectors.

He said growth for large data centres in recent years has been enormous, but wanted to “debunk” the idea that data centres do not create jobs.

“Data services are vital for Ireland’s competitiveness in attracting other cloud-based jobs,” he said.

In addition to the two sites in Ireland, the group is in the process of identifying other sites in the UK and Europe.

Speaking at the jobs launch, Minister for Business, Enterprise, and Innovation Heather Humphreys described the investment as “fantastic news” for Ireland.

“It's particularly encouraging to see an indigenous company making this type of commitment to a sector that we think of as being dominated by Silicon Valley giants,” said Minister Humphreys.

TD Frances Fitzgerald described the announcement as “incredibly encouraging for Irish business.”

Echelon is owned by Aldgate Developments, a UK and Ireland-based property development company.

The two data centres will have a total capacity of more than 180MW, with the first tranche of 40MW of capacity due to be available at the Clondalkin site in the third quarter of 2020.

Echelon also have planning in place for a 84MW power station on the Clondalkin site (if required) and expect the centre to operational with staff by the third quarter of 2020.

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