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Businesses The Almighty Buck Apple

Apple Pays Couple $1.7m For 1 Acre Plot 215

Posted by timothy
from the good-work-if-you-can-get-it dept.
itwbennett writes "Chris Nerney is blogging about Apple's $1.7 million purchase of a 1-acre lot in Maiden, N.C. where it plans to build a $1 billion, 500,000 sq. ft. data center. The couple who owned the land, and the home that sat on the land, Donnie and Kathy Fulbright (hereafter known as Apple's shrewdest investors) reportedly 'rejected two previous offers from Apple before being told to name their price,' says Nerney."
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Apple Pays Couple $1.7m For 1 Acre Plot

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  • blog spam (Score:5, Informative)

    by CaptainDefragged (939505) on Sunday October 10, 2010 @02:09AM (#33850200)
    Blog spam. Here is [bloomberg.com] the actual story.
  • by Jack9 (11421) on Sunday October 10, 2010 @02:09AM (#33850202)

    Good for them. I wonder why apple wanted it so bad?

    • Apple was building a $1Billion server farm on the property in North Carolina. Clearly they were the last holdout.

    • by nacturation (646836) * <nacturation @ g m ail.com> on Sunday October 10, 2010 @03:49AM (#33850506) Journal

      Good for them. I wonder why apple wanted it so bad?

      I wonder why Slashdot posts summaries.

      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by maxwell demon (590494)

        To have a place for the links we use to melt down the servers. :-)

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by pavon (30274)

        So tell me, where it the summary or article does it explain why they needed that particular acre of land, as opposed to the other thousands of acres nearby? I'm sure there is a good reason, but it doesn't say. This is why I stopped paying attention to the news. Those "hard-hitting journalists" are too fucking stupid to ask even the most obvious of questions.

        • So tell me, where it the summary or article does it explain why they needed that particular acre of land, as opposed to the other thousands of acres nearby? I'm sure there is a good reason, but it doesn't say.

          From the summary: "Apple's $1.7 million purchase of a 1-acre lot in Maiden, N.C. where it plans to build a $1 billion, 500,000 sq. ft. data center"

          So why did Apple need that "1-acre lot in Maiden, N.C."? Because that's "where it plans to build a $1 billion, 500,000 sq. ft. data center". It's hard to make it much clearer than that. A valid question then becomes "why did Apple plan to built the data center in that particular location?" but that's an entirely different question than "why did Apple want that

    • if they named their price and apple paid it straight off they asked for too little - they needed a better negotiation strategy
  • Waiting to sell (Score:2, Insightful)

    by thoughtspace (1444717)

    Bet he neighbours who did not wait are pissed off.

  • Exactly what is so damn special about that particular plot of land, anyway?

  • More details (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 10, 2010 @02:11AM (#33850214)

    The actual article is at Bloomberg: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-10-05/apple-s-data-needs-mean-1-7-million-jacuzzi-for-carolina-pair.html [bloomberg.com]

    The article linked in the summary is just a blog post condensing the Bloomberg article, which contains much more information including the tax incentives that NC's state and local governments used to attract Apple, the revenue prospects those incentives were designed to entice, Apple's purposes in building the data center, and, for the human interest angle, more on the family involved and their plans for the proceeds from the land sale. Really, why in the world would anyone have submitted a crummy, abbreviated blog post over a decent article from a reputable source?

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by im_thatoneguy (819432)

      Am I the only one who finds it extremely unsettling that Apple plans to run a $1B facility with up to 50 people and *maybe* employ up to 250 more minimum wage people for security etc?

      That's a trend that's not going to go away. Welcome to the information economy where people are in a surplus. How long until a $10B facility is managed by 2 people (excluding the ISS)?

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by confused one (671304)
        It's a data warehouse. How many people do you think it takes to operate? And for what it's worth, it says nothing about minimum wage in the article.
        • by hedwards (940851)
          No, but that's generally about what security work pays. You get more if you're unionized, but the south is particularly hostile towards union organizers. So, I'm guessing that the minimum wage figure is probably pretty accurate.

          Which never made sense to me. You've got this piece of property that's worth hundreds of millions of dollars, but you don't feel like paying for the training and equipment necessary to keep it secured.
          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by demonlapin (527802)
            If you're not surrounded by savages, it doesn't take much to secure a property. One or two guys to wander around at night and make sure no drunk kids decide to shoot out/throw rocks at the windows.
          • by kd5ujz (640580)
            Blackwater was in NC. I bet there are some unemployed PMCs in the area.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        Am I the only one who finds it extremely unsettling that Apple plans to run a $1B facility with up to 50 people and *maybe* employ up to 250 more minimum wage people for security etc?

        That's a trend that's not going to go away. Welcome to the information economy where people are in a surplus. How long until a $10B facility is managed by 2 people (excluding the ISS)?

        Welcome to the Industrial revolution. Things that can be Automated are automated for the savings in manpower. Why should computers remain a labour intensive industry?

        • by hedwards (940851)
          Because if they didn't MS would go out of business?
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          The problem is that jobs disappear, and the total amount of work to be done in society is reduced, yet the savings in time and money are never passed on to the workers. This is not a problem with tech, but society in general, and it is a big part on why we have 10% unemployment right now. If we changed to a 35 hour work week, as France did, we could solve the unemployment problem. I'm all for automation, but that reduced work load should be passed on to society in the form of increased wages elsewhere (b
      • by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Sunday October 10, 2010 @08:19AM (#33851200)

        Hire a bunch of people to sit around and do nothing, just so that they can say they are employing more people?

        You realize that a non-trivial factor in our high quality of life is the amazing amount of automation we have. One person accomplishes so much more than they used to, in particular when it comes to trivial tasks. Time was, little got done other than getting food, because it is so important and it took so much time. Most humans spent a lot of their time on farming or hunting. Lead to a low standard of life. Large parts of our population did nothing but work on providing for our most basic need. Now? You get a few, highly educated, people and some heavy equipment and they can handle thousands of acres. Food can be produced cheap because it is so automated.

        Same shit with data storage. Data is cheap and widely available because it is dirt cheap to store. Put a bunch of computers in a building and have a few people mind after them. That's all you need. However you can store and distribute massive amounts of data that way. Make it nice and cheap. Go back to the days of manual card catalogues and physical books and data was a privilege. You had to have money, power or connections to get easy access to data. Basically a university library with good ILL was the only way to truly have access to lots of data, and even then you had to wait and deal with problems. It was labour intensive to get and expensive to store.

        Please remember that efficiency increases don't mean nobody works, it means people work in other areas, or accomplish more. For example in addition to IT support, I also do media for our department. I record talks and things like that. I can do that, because of modern technology. I record to a digital tape, dump it to computer, and edit it right there. Can be done with little of my time. As such, I can do it in addition to other duties. Were it all film, we'd need a dedicated person. Editing would take forever because it is literally a process of hand cutting the film and splicing it back together. Simple edits take a lot of manual time. Not with an NLE program. I can do an edit in a few seconds.

        The idea is we automate more simple things and we can move on to more complex things. Also, it can simply needing to work less to have the same amount of benefit.

        • by Hatta (162192)

          One person accomplishes so much more than they used to, in particular when it comes to trivial tasks.

          And yet, we are so much busier today.

          Please remember that efficiency increases don't mean nobody works

          Isn't that a problem? If efficiency just means there's more time for people to do more work, there's something seriously wrong with the world.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      TReally, why in the world would anyone have submitted a crummy, abbreviated blog post over a decent article from a reputable source?

      AdWords traffic for their buddy or themselves? It's called blogspam for a reason. Maybe the /. editor should have done some editor work?

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Blymie (231220)

        There are no editors at /. None. Nada.

        Never has been.

        In fact, calling what Slashdot 'story submission approval' people do, 'editing', is an insult to editors everywhere!

    • Look at the submitter, look at the URL, sigh at timothy for accepting it in this form.

  • by bogaboga (793279) on Sunday October 10, 2010 @02:12AM (#33850220)

    I mean...being paid that much money is like winning the lottery. The trouble I see with this is that many of the folks who won the lottery are not happy at all if this story [msn.com] or this one [usatoday.com] are to be believed.

    I would have wanted Apple to pay me some regular good cash making me fluid till my last days on planet earth. How about that?

    • by LoudMusic (199347) on Sunday October 10, 2010 @02:26AM (#33850286)

      So learn some self control and bank the single big payoff, then spend wisely for the remainder of your days. The article refers to the people winning then "losing" the money. They didn't lose it. They fucking blew the cash!

      • I may well be wrong but that falls under cap gains you either buy something else with it or give uncle sam a HUGE chunk of it.

        • by squiggleslash (241428) on Sunday October 10, 2010 @09:58AM (#33851640) Homepage Journal

          Long term capital gains (which is what this would fall under) maxes out at 20% (15% this year, but it's going up next year.), with the tax being applied to the difference between the cost bought and the cost sold. It's (much!) less than income tax, which doesn't apply to capital gains at all.

          • Thus why I said buying something makes a lot more sense than giving uncle Sam 15% of that difference.

        • by russotto (537200) on Sunday October 10, 2010 @11:11AM (#33851984) Journal

          I may well be wrong but that falls under cap gains you either buy something else with it or give uncle sam a HUGE chunk of it.

          Not on sale of your primary residence. It's tax free. (though there might be a cap on that, I don't know)

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by santax (1541065)
      Mwaw, those are 8 stories gone wrong. How many people have won millions? About now... probably also millions worldwide. Here when you win a big price they suggest you take like 200.000-400.000 and spend it on stupid things. That cool car, buy that expensive leather handmade coat... hell buy 2! When that money is gone, come back to us and we give you the rest of the sum. In that time people have a chance to live 'big' and after those initial feelings of *luxury must have* are gone... they know a bit better h
    • by khallow (566160)

      I mean...being paid that much money is like winning the lottery. The trouble I see with this is that many of the folks who won the lottery are not happy at all if this story or this one are to be believed.

      The main problem I see with the lottery winners is simply that they got a huge amount of money without the experience of how to invest or save that money. I don't know whether the couple in question can handle the money better or not, but it's both not as big, hence, not as much a problem to invest and they might be shrewder investors, more able to handle that kind of money.

    • "Lord, give me the chance to prove that winning the lottery won't spoil me."

      Anyway, in all seriousness I bet [pun intended] I would be more controlled, although I would have some fun, likely splurging on some nice jewelry for instance
      http://magiccards.info/query?q=mox&v=card&s=cname [magiccards.info] :P

    • Bet they were happy while they were spending it, fool and his money, etc.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by hedwards (940851)
      People who win the lottery aren't typically well educated in money management to begin with. Trying to learn how to manage money after you've come into a huge windfall is, if anything, harder than learning it beforehand.

      I doubt that applies to this couple as they were savvy enough to hold out for it and actually earn it.
  • fools! (Score:4, Funny)

    by santax (1541065) on Sunday October 10, 2010 @02:13AM (#33850224)
    That land had 2 bil. worth of oil and minerals in it! Muwwwaahhhaahhhaaaaa... Did I just blew my cover here?
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Barny (103770)

      Not sure about in America, but in Australia you don't own the mineral wealth under your property.

      • Re:fools! (Score:5, Informative)

        by EmagGeek (574360) <gterich@@@aol...com> on Sunday October 10, 2010 @07:32AM (#33851062) Journal

        You don't in America either. In fact, in America, you don't even really own the land. You only own the house and other "improvement" ON the land. You rent your land from the government for which you pay annual rent in the form of Property Tax (this is the feudal relationship between Lord and Sovereign that we fought a revolution to get away from, and we're right back there now).

        We have this feudal title system in 48 states. It's possible to own land in allodium only in Texas and Nevada.

        • by garcia (6573)

          Well that's interesting. My parents and several other family members in Pennsylvania are paid money by companies extracting natural gas from the bubble under their properties. Your acreage owned determines the amount you are paid.

          While "minerals" aren't natural gas, I'm guessing it's more or less the same thing.

          • by vakuona (788200)
            I don't really know why those families should be paid for the natural resources. In other countries, you don't own any natural resources below the surface. Those rights have to be purchased separately. You could argue everyone owns those resources (i.e. government owns them).
            • Compensation for when the gas dome collapses and your house is destroyed in the ensuing cave-in. Or, as happened to my parents, an undocumented coal mine shaft collapses and your foundation cracks- but since it's undocumented, you can't get disaster compensation, your homeowner's insurance laughs at you, and you lose half the usable square footage of your house because an artesian spring opens up in your formerly finished basement.

        • by jeff4747 (256583)

          You don't in America either. In fact, in America, you don't even really own the land. You only own the house and other "improvement" ON the land. You rent your land from the government for which you pay annual rent in the form of Property Tax

          You should probably included the "IANAL" disclaimer, since you're wrong. (IANAL either)

          You do own the land. You may or may not own the mineral rights. It's very common these days for the original developer of the land to retain mineral rights when they sell off the i

      • It varies from place to place. In urban and suburban areas, you typically do not own mineral rights. In rural areas you often do own those rights.

      • by bakes (87194)

        People in Iraq don't own the oil under their land either.

      • by hedwards (940851)
        In the US, ranchers commonly sell "their" wildlife to hunters. The hunters have to get a permit, but the ranchers are deluded enough to think that they own the wildlife. The government lets them do it since in the US you can't just go onto somebody else's property without permission.
        • by blindseer (891256)

          In the US, ranchers commonly sell "their" wildlife to hunters. The hunters have to get a permit, but the ranchers are deluded enough to think that they own the wildlife. The government lets them do it since in the US you can't just go onto somebody else's property without permission.

          So, what you are saying is that the ranchers aren't really selling the wildlife but are selling access to their land. The government is selling the wildlife.

  • by DWMorse (1816016) on Sunday October 10, 2010 @02:19AM (#33850258) Homepage
    Don't you mean... iOrchard ??
  • by dn15 (735502) on Sunday October 10, 2010 @02:45AM (#33850352)

    What, so they were too good to attach a bunch of balloons to their house and fly it away? Greedy bastards.

    • For the 1.7 million they will get, they can afford to buy a new piece of land and have the house moved down to it.
      Obviously not by thousands of personal sized balloons.

  • For Those Curious (Score:3, Informative)

    by pgn674 (995941) on Sunday October 10, 2010 @03:08AM (#33850428) Homepage
    500,000 square feet == 11.48 acres
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      500,000 square feet == 11.48 acres

      == 46 450 m^2

    • Or for the normal part of the world:
      1 acre = 4 046.85642 square meters
      4 047^(1 / 2) = 63.6160357 meters
      1 700 000 / 4047 = 420 $ / square meter

      500 000 * (square feet) = 46 451.52 square meters
      And yeah:
      46 451.52 / 4 046.86 = 11.4784104

      11.48 * 1.7 = 19.5 million for all the real estate needed at the same price per square meter or 2% of the total cost for the data center even if they had paid the same amount for everyone.

    • 500,000 square feet == 11.48 acres

      So, I suppose that means the new datacenter will be 12+ stories high.

  • They're going to kill the fish in the pond in order to build the data center?

  • Property speculation (Score:3, Informative)

    by drsquare (530038) on Sunday October 10, 2010 @04:47AM (#33850632)

    Beats working for a living. Just ask Donald Trump.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      Nothing new. Around here, house prices are determined by professional valuers who have collectively inflated the prices to at least 5 times what they are worth. What did you think caused the crisis? It is just the belief in made-up value, followed by a cold-turkey reality check.
    • by shentino (1139071)

      You mean that guy who wound up almost a full billion in debt?

      Real estate isn't child's play.

      You still have to work, just with your brains instead of your muscles.

  • That's a Bargain. I live in a rural area where 1 acre (4046.86 m^2) of building land would set you back roughly 2 to 2.5 times the price of 1.7M$. Land prices increase exponentially towards the city centre. If you have the money you can buy one m^2 (10.7 Ft^2) for 120kUD$.
  • Mis-characterized (Score:5, Informative)

    by kenh (9056) on Sunday October 10, 2010 @08:56AM (#33851342) Homepage Journal

    Apple paid $1.7M for an acre adjoining their current datacenter FOR EXPANSION. Apple is not building a 500,000 square foot data center on a one acre lot as the post above would have you believe - to do so would require that Apple build the datacenter at least 12-14 stories tall, since one acre of land is only 43,560 square feet, and after taking in to consideration easements ten largest foot print for the building would be, say, 30,000 square feet (give or take)...

    Thanks CaptainDefragged for link to actual Bloomberg piece on this purchase: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-10-05/apple-s-data-needs-mean-1-7-million-jacuzzi-for-carolina-pair.html?cmpid=yhoo [bloomberg.com]

    • ...to do so would require that Apple build the datacenter at least 12-14 stories tall

      Steve would use this layout [wordpress.com]. When the iLife Clock blinks, it's time to think different.

  • by Suffering Bastard (194752) on Sunday October 10, 2010 @12:01PM (#33852332)
    Quoting Bloomberg:

    >>Combating Joblessness

    Google has hired more than 80 employees at the site, said spokeswoman Emily Wood....
    <<

    Sounds to me like the town of Maiden is combating Jobslessness.

    :::ducks:::
  • Google purchased a Church [datacenterknowledge.com] near their DC in Iowa, as well.

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