Digital Realty Trust: Indoor vertical farm on the way for former Digital Realty data center in Herndon, Virginia

Sep 14, 2022 | Posted by MadalineDunn

In Virginia, a former Digital Realty data center is gearing up for a dramatic transformation. Located in Herndon, the company’s old data center will become an agricultural facility, specifically a vertical farm. Vertical farms have similar power, water, and air conditioning requirements to data centers, making the former facility an ideal home for the new venture. 

The agricultural facility will be operated by Beanstalk Farms and will be home to vertically stacked hydroponic gardens, producing leafy greens, herbs, and vegetables. According to Beanstalk, it typically targets vacant commercial buildings, like the 71,000 sq ft building in Herndon, for its projects, which will also become its new headquarters and research and development center. 

The project has received significant support from the local community and government, receiving $200,000 in grants from the Governor’s Agricultural and Forestry Industries Development Fund and Fairfax County, which it said will support $2 million in local investment and create 29 jobs in the region.

Speaking about the development, back in 2021, when the announcement was made, Governor Northam said: “I am pleased to support a project that brings together Virginia’s oldest and largest industry, agriculture, with one of our newest and fastest growing sectors, technology. Innovative entrepreneurs like Mike and Jack Ross are demonstrating how STEM fields can bring together exciting, new growing techniques cultivated from advancements in biology and technology.”

Before Digital Realty sold the 251 site, it was a data center for over a decade.