updated 12:55 pm EDT, Thu July 19, 2012
Smaller 'tactical' facility to sit near main datacenter
Apple is indeed working on a second datacenter in Maiden, North Carolina, county permits show. Filings describe the building as a "tactical" datacenter with 11 rooms, measuring 21,030 square feet. The project should cost Apple $1,885,129, and will be located at 5977 Startown Road, next to the company's original Maiden facility, which was built to support iCloud and iTunes services.
The second complex's permits indicate it will have 22 air conditions, 14 humidifiers, six heaters, and five fans, among other design elements. Documents also state that the building won't house any employees, and will in fact have just one unisex bathroom. For security it will have an 8-foot chainlink fence, and "man trap" security doors, requiring people to go through two sets to enter.
Evidence of Apple's work on a second Maiden structure dates back to March. Talk of it, though, goes back to before Apple even broke ground on the main center. It's believed that Apple has had the second building in mind from the beginning, but simply been staggering construction.