Chandler’s data center ordinance now in effect

Jan. 11, 2023
stock of computer servers at a data center

CHANDLER, Ariz. – The City of Chandler has joined a small list of cities across the nation to adopt a zoning code amendment to define the location and operation of data centers.

The approved amendment includes the following provisions:

  • Establishes a new section of the zoning code (Chapter 35, Section 2214) specifically to address data centers
  • Clarifies data centers as a primary use only permitted in planning area development (PAD) zoning designations
  • Clarifies data centers as an ancillary use, including size limitations, purpose, and location on-site
  • Establishes a detailed communications protocol to notify impacted residents about pre- and post-construction, including required neighborhood meetings and an on-site liaison
  • Requires a pre-construction sound study to establish noise baseline with results provided to residents prior to a scheduled neighborhood meeting
  • Requires sound mitigation measures to ensure noise levels from a data center does not exceed levels observed during baseline study
  • Requires the data center to conduct an annual noise study during peak operation times for five years once construction of the data center is complete
  • Establishes backup generator routine maintenance and testing time limitations, including notification protocol

Data centers have evolved throughout the years from single-user facilities to larger multi-tenant facilities and transitioned from water-cooled to electrically-cooled facilities. Due to those changes, there has been an increase in potential noise impacts to the surrounding neighborhoods. Over the years, Chandler has required increased levels of noise study/mitigation efforts, public outreach, and regulations regarding backup power generators.

The ordinance was unanimously approved on Dec. 5, 2022 and took effect on Jan. 5.

For more information, contact Chandler’s Planning Division staff at 480-782-3050

Media contact:
Stephanie Romero
City of Chandler, Public Information Officer