March 15, 2017
Google unveiled a new mural at its data center in Iowa today as part of the Data Center Mural Project, a partnership with local artists to bring a bit of the magic from inside data centers to the outside world. Google also announced a $50,000 grant to the Council Bluffs Community School District (CBCSD) to support arts education.
“I am excited today to announce that, as part of the Data Center Mural Project, Google will be donating $50,000 to the school district’s art program to grow and enhance the way students utilize technology to experience and create works of art, “ said Eric Schmidt, Executive Chairman of Alphabet, Inc.
Although people around the world rely on it every day, few people actually know that requests they send to “the cloud” go through physical locations like the data center in Council Bluffs. By painting murals on the data center walls, Google hopes to inspire more people to learn about the incredible structures and people inside who make so much of modern life possible.
Iowa artist Gary Kelley designed the mural and catalogued Iowa’s rich history through a series of images on the data center. From Lewis & Clark's first council with the native people of the region to the transcontinental telegraph, the transcontinental railroad and finally Google’s data center - this mural is a reminder that innovative ideas have always flowed through Iowa. To view a video of the mural development and its meaning, click here.
Business and community leaders attended the mural unveiling, including Governor Terry Branstad, Mayor Matt Walsh, CBCSD Superintendent Dr. Martha Bruckner and Schmidt.
"Iowa is proud to be creating a business climate that allows great corporate citizens like Google to call Iowa home," said Branstad. "More than 300 people are now employed at the data center, and thousands of construction workers helped make the data center possible. With the creation of these high-tech jobs, Google is helping position Iowa as a hub for technology and innovation."
The Google grant to CBCSD will go toward an art program that will grow and enhance the way students utilize technology to experience and create works of art. This program will focus on virtual art creation and enabling the school district and students to implement a Virtual Gallery of Council Bluffs Schools’ students’ work.
“Council Bluffs Community Schools treasure our relationship with Google as we work together in multiple ways to help our students prepare for the future,” said Dr. Martha Bruckner, Superintendent for CBCSD. “It is wonderful to have Google help us enrich our work with students in the area of the arts, using technology to encourage creativity. Our Council Bluffs' art teachers already find exciting and nontraditional ways to spark learning for children, and this grant will open doors to new possibilities.”
The mural project continues Google’s commitment to the community of Council Bluffs and the State of Iowa. Google’s data center in Council Bluffs is a $2.5 billion investment that plays an important role for the company, and Google has awarded more than $1.1 million to local schools and nonprofits.
“Google is a great corporate partner that is focused on giving back to the community and contributing Google expertise, which serves as a unique enhancement of STEM education for the youth of Council Bluffs,” said Mayor Matt Walsh. “Google efforts in Council Bluffs will pay dividends for generations to come.
To learn more about the Data Center Mural Project, visit https://datacentermurals.withgoogle.com/.