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Loudoun County draws ‘a hard line’ on data centers in rural land

...Some residents in Virginia’s fastest-growing county complain that the data centers are a noisy eyesore. Last year, Loudoun’s Board of Supervisors limited construction in some neighborhoods and added new environmental and design requirements.


Those restraints came on top of Dominion Energy’s surprise announcement last summer that it faced a capacity shortage in eastern Loudoun – data centers consume enormous amounts of energy – putting a potential damper on construction through at least 2025.


With the Rural Policy Area in the western Loudoun off-limits to data centers, developers have shifted their focus to Prince William County, but also have their eyes on Stafford and Fauquier counties, according to Rizer...


...I would say my lesson learned is to be very strategic -- set real expectations and work with the elected officials within the community. Define the envelope where it would be appropriate for data centers. I would include it around existing infrastructure and transportation corridors and consider proximity to environmentally sensitive areas and residential areas. I think that if you start encroaching or overlapping, that could be a dangerous precedent.


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