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ALTOONA BUSINESS: Facebook Incites Development

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Just having the name Facebook in Altoona is spurring development in that area.

Construction on a massive building for the social media giant is going up along Interstate 80 in Altoona. It’s the first of three server buildings Facebook plans to add to the area.

The project employs 2,000 construction workers and will provide 30 permanent jobs when it’s done.

Frederick Hollister, the Executive Director of Eastern Polk Regional Development, says because of Facebook, Altoona is seeing new businesses in town including Johnny’s Italian Steak House.

Another retail development will pop up near Bass Pro Shop in the spring and Hollister says more could be on the way.

“We have companies right now that are in various stages of negotiation with land owners and with the city of Altoona. For warehouse distribution facilities, professional office development, retail development. There’s a lot of stuff going on in Altoona and the east side of Polk County that we’re really excited about.”

The new Facebook server center will be done in late 2014 and start serving traffic in early 2015.