Thousands of Workers Building Massive Data Center Projects in 2024

January 4, 2024|

It comes as little surprise that in 2024 artificial intelligence and hybrid cloud storage needs are driving robust data center construction activity.

Huge populations of construction workers – typically between 2,000 to 3,000 individuals – are building these projects, limited only by a lack of readily available power and extended lead times for key pieces of electrical infrastructure.

According to Statista, there are approximately 10,978 data center locations worldwide as of December. Of the top 20 countries with the most operational data centers, the U.S. leads the pack with 5,388. Second is Germany with 522 data centers. Third is the United Kingdom with 517, followed by China with 449.

During the first half of 2023, the world witnessed the largest amount of data center construction in history, according to CBRE. It represented an all-time high of 2,287.6 megawatts under construction in primary markets, a year-over-year increase of 25 percent. Data centers are becoming larger and more specialized to meet specific demands.

Strong demand continues into 2024, but lack of enough available power supply plus waits on generators, enclosures and other necessary equipment are delaying construction timelines.

Artificial intelligence start-ups are among the list of owners demanding healthy power supply. According to CBRE, AI start-ups are requiring 5 to 25 megawatts. One megawatt is enough to power 750 homes simultaneously.


In Goodyear, 20 miles west of Phoenix, is anticipating a Spring 2024 completion of owner Vantage’s AZ11 data center. The more than $1.5 billion construction project spans 114,046 square feet of a two-story building that includes four data modules, infrastructure and office space. Vantage Data Centers and McCarthy Building Companies are leading the design-build team, with Corgan as the master planning services provider. AZ11 is the first 16-megawatt critical load phase of a 64-megawatt building, with AZ12 under construction to the north and AZ13 to the west. Future phases are planned for this project, which is located in the Bullard Tech Corridor.

And in Mesa, some 20 miles east of Phoenix, Meta is teaming with Burns & McDonnell and DPR Construction, along with Sheehan Nagle Hartray Architects (A Woolpert Company), on a five-building campus encompassing more than 2.5 million square feet of data center and administrative space.

This is Meta’s 18th data center globally and its 14th in the U.S.

Completion is anticipated in 2026.

The project is slated for LEED Gold certification. The facility will be supported by 100 percent renewable energy.

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