Introducing the Niagara Digital Campus
Friday, July 1st, 2022
Urbacon, one of the premier developers of commercial and industrial properties in Canada and the northern United States, has teamed up with Niagara Falls Redevelopment (NFR) to announce a landmark partnership to develop the Niagara Digital Campus. This innovative, $1.48 billion technology and data hub will bring thousands of jobs and cutting-edge technological infrastructure to the City of Niagara Falls. Building on the unique strengths of the Niagara Falls area, the development will be energy efficient, low noise and blend seamlessly with the surrounding area.
In February 2021, at NFR’s suggestion, Urbacon began to focus on the Niagara Falls region for its new data center. Urbacon held its first calls and video meetings with the City of Niagara Falls’ economic development team in May/June 2021. NFR and Urbacon presented the plan to Mayor Restaino in September 2021.
In October 2021, the Mayor’s City Planning Department laid out a path to zoning approval for the parcel—without ever mentioning that it would like to use some of the land for a park.
It was only in January 2022 that the Mayor ever mentioned his intention to take some of the land by eminent domain.
Once all approvals are received, it is expected that Urbacon will be ready to begin construction on the campus within six months.
- During construction, the Niagara Digital Campus will create more than 5,600 high-paying jobs with more than $250 million in wages, with economic spinoff benefits expected to exceed $810 million.
- Once operational, the Digital Campus will create more than 550 high-paying permanent jobs, with expected annual wages of nearly $29 million. Total economic benefit from the new facility is expected to exceed $250 million annually, with more than 1,700 permanent jobs created in support and ancillary businesses.
- As part of the new Niagara Digital Campus development, NFR is proposing donating a portion of its existing land to the City of Niagara Falls for public amenities, including a potential public park and events center. NFR will also donate $250,000 to the city each year for 10 years for upkeep and maintenance of the park.
- It should be noted that the 20 acres proposed to be used for a park by NFR does not include either the city’s Social Services building or any church. And NFR owns well over 80% of the land it is proposing to donate – which is significantly more than Mayor Restaino needs for his park.