Data center expanding in Meadowville Tech Park as operator eyes nearby Cartograf site

chrisia data center meadowville aerial 2013

The data center at 1401 Meadowville Technology Parkway as seen in 2013. Chirisa, which has owned the property since 2020, is looking to build an additional data center on the site. (Images courtesy Chesterfield)

An Irish data center company is looking to juice up its presence in Chesterfield’s Meadowville Technology Park.

Chirisa recently filed plans to build an additional data center at 1401 Meadowville Technology Parkway, where it’s already underway on a project to increase the megawattage of an existing data center.

Elsewhere in the park, the company is looking to build an additional data center on the site of an unfinished industrial project at 1600 Digital Drive that was supposed to a packaging factory for Mexican firm Cartograf but has been stuck in legal limbo for several years and recently subject to a court-ordered sale.

For the Meadowville Technology Parkway property, Chirisa plans to construct a 139,000-square-foot data center with an initial 20-megawatt capacity. Construction is slated to be completed in late 2025. The upcoming facility is planned to eventually double its megawatt capacity, Chirisa Managing Director Lee Hayes said.

The project is on track to be a nine-figure investment, as Hayes said the company currently anticipates it costs about $12 million per megawatt to build data centers in the Richmond market.

DPR Construction is the general contractor for the project. Dallas-based Gensler is the project’s architect and Timmons Group was tapped to handle civil engineering for the new-construction building, per a site plan.

chirisa data center plan meadowville e1712616300241

A site plan showing the planned new data center that would join an existing facility on Chirisa’s campus in Meadowville Technology Park. (Courtesy Chesterfield)

That new building would rise next to the company’s existing 244,000-square-foot data center, which it is upgrading from its current 6 megawatts to 18 megawatts capacity. The megawatt project is expected to be completed in June after it broke ground last September, Hayes said.

Chirisa’s existing data center on Meadowville Technology Parkway was purchased from Capital One about three years ago. In 2012, then-Gov. Bob McDonnell’s administration touted the Capital One project as a $150 million investment that would create 50 jobs.

Capital One formally opened the data center in early 2014 but had only built out a third of the facility’s potential capability by the time it sold the property to Chirisa in late 2020. Hayes said Chirisa has already exceeded that initial $150 million investment goal.

Data center planned for Cartograf site

cartograf meadowville plant

Cartograf’s unfinished packaging plant at Meadowville Technology Park. (BizSense file)

Chirisa is looking to further increase its investment in Meadowville Tech Park with the pending sale of the Cartograf property at 1600 Digital Drive.

In 2019, Cartograf, in coordination with the then-Gov. Ralph Northam administration and Chesterfield County, announced a $65 million project to build a folding and microcorrugated packaging plant that was anticipated to create 63 jobs.

The facility never opened and the partially completed project prompted lawsuits by contractor Choate and bank Comerica, which were both involved in the project. The court ordered a sale of the property to satisfy liens held by those companies.

Chirisa, in partnership with Northern Virginia-based American Real Estate Partners, made the winning $16.5 million bid in the court-ordered sale. Hayes said the two firms intend to buy the property in a joint venture.

They would demolish the roughly 300,000-square-foot unfinished plant because it’s been deemed too damaged by the elements to be usable. The future data center on the property is expected to be of a similar size, Hayes said.

Chirisa and American Real Estate Partners have the property under contract but the deal is tied up due to Cartograf’s legal proceedings.

Cartograf in February filed to block the court-ordered sale, but it must post a bond of $990,000 by mid-May to finalize that appeal, according to recent court filings. Court records showed that as of Monday afternoon Cartograf had yet to do so.

While Chirisa owns its 13 data centers across the U.S., employees at its subsidiary Digital Fortress actually operate the facilities. Hayes said the two companies plan to have 30 employees assigned to its local facility in the next 18 months.

The plan is to increase that Meadowville headcount to around 80 to 100 in the next several years.

In addition to 1401 Meadowville Technology Parkway, Chirisa also owns an undeveloped parcel at 1651 Meadowville Technology Parkway, for a total of 88 acres in the industrial park.

chrisia data center meadowville aerial 2013

The data center at 1401 Meadowville Technology Parkway as seen in 2013. Chirisa, which has owned the property since 2020, is looking to build an additional data center on the site. (Images courtesy Chesterfield)

An Irish data center company is looking to juice up its presence in Chesterfield’s Meadowville Technology Park.

Chirisa recently filed plans to build an additional data center at 1401 Meadowville Technology Parkway, where it’s already underway on a project to increase the megawattage of an existing data center.

Elsewhere in the park, the company is looking to build an additional data center on the site of an unfinished industrial project at 1600 Digital Drive that was supposed to a packaging factory for Mexican firm Cartograf but has been stuck in legal limbo for several years and recently subject to a court-ordered sale.

For the Meadowville Technology Parkway property, Chirisa plans to construct a 139,000-square-foot data center with an initial 20-megawatt capacity. Construction is slated to be completed in late 2025. The upcoming facility is planned to eventually double its megawatt capacity, Chirisa Managing Director Lee Hayes said.

The project is on track to be a nine-figure investment, as Hayes said the company currently anticipates it costs about $12 million per megawatt to build data centers in the Richmond market.

DPR Construction is the general contractor for the project. Dallas-based Gensler is the project’s architect and Timmons Group was tapped to handle civil engineering for the new-construction building, per a site plan.

chirisa data center plan meadowville e1712616300241

A site plan showing the planned new data center that would join an existing facility on Chirisa’s campus in Meadowville Technology Park. (Courtesy Chesterfield)

That new building would rise next to the company’s existing 244,000-square-foot data center, which it is upgrading from its current 6 megawatts to 18 megawatts capacity. The megawatt project is expected to be completed in June after it broke ground last September, Hayes said.

Chirisa’s existing data center on Meadowville Technology Parkway was purchased from Capital One about three years ago. In 2012, then-Gov. Bob McDonnell’s administration touted the Capital One project as a $150 million investment that would create 50 jobs.

Capital One formally opened the data center in early 2014 but had only built out a third of the facility’s potential capability by the time it sold the property to Chirisa in late 2020. Hayes said Chirisa has already exceeded that initial $150 million investment goal.

Data center planned for Cartograf site

cartograf meadowville plant

Cartograf’s unfinished packaging plant at Meadowville Technology Park. (BizSense file)

Chirisa is looking to further increase its investment in Meadowville Tech Park with the pending sale of the Cartograf property at 1600 Digital Drive.

In 2019, Cartograf, in coordination with the then-Gov. Ralph Northam administration and Chesterfield County, announced a $65 million project to build a folding and microcorrugated packaging plant that was anticipated to create 63 jobs.

The facility never opened and the partially completed project prompted lawsuits by contractor Choate and bank Comerica, which were both involved in the project. The court ordered a sale of the property to satisfy liens held by those companies.

Chirisa, in partnership with Northern Virginia-based American Real Estate Partners, made the winning $16.5 million bid in the court-ordered sale. Hayes said the two firms intend to buy the property in a joint venture.

They would demolish the roughly 300,000-square-foot unfinished plant because it’s been deemed too damaged by the elements to be usable. The future data center on the property is expected to be of a similar size, Hayes said.

Chirisa and American Real Estate Partners have the property under contract but the deal is tied up due to Cartograf’s legal proceedings.

Cartograf in February filed to block the court-ordered sale, but it must post a bond of $990,000 by mid-May to finalize that appeal, according to recent court filings. Court records showed that as of Monday afternoon Cartograf had yet to do so.

While Chirisa owns its 13 data centers across the U.S., employees at its subsidiary Digital Fortress actually operate the facilities. Hayes said the two companies plan to have 30 employees assigned to its local facility in the next 18 months.

The plan is to increase that Meadowville headcount to around 80 to 100 in the next several years.

In addition to 1401 Meadowville Technology Parkway, Chirisa also owns an undeveloped parcel at 1651 Meadowville Technology Parkway, for a total of 88 acres in the industrial park.

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