Intel has been itching to start construction on a new chip plant in Ireland to build future 14-nanometer microprocessors for some time but before anything could be done, they needed final approval from officials in the region to do so. Fortunately for Intel, the lead planning agency in Ireland has given the $4 billion project the green light to move forward.
As we understand it, Intel confirmed plans for the Ireland plant in May of 2012 and the Kildare County Council approved plans for the facility back in August 2012. Intel was ultimately met with an appeal from An Bord Pleanála, Ireland’s lead planning agency, which delayed construction. Intel received word just a week ago that the agency had given them the final go-ahead, albeit with a few updated conditions.
The Leixlip plant will be one of three global sites used to produce Intel’s next generation 14-nanometer chips; the other two locations are in Arizona and Oregon. It will be built alongside existing infrastructure and buildings at Intel’s manufacturing complex and will consist of 244,819 square meters of floor area.
It is expected to take some 3,500 construction workers roughly two years to finish the build. Once complete, Intel plans to hire roughly 800 full-time employees to handle day-to-day operations. The chip maker ultimately plans to shift gears from 14-nanometer to 10nm, 7nm and even 5nm in accordance with Moore’s Law. The latter, of course, isn’t expected to happen until sometime after 2015.