Award-Winning Site Selection
Award-Winning Site Selection

The AEP economic development team ranks among Site Selection Magazine’s Top Utilities again in 2021. Learn more


Every site location has unique features — many add value, but some are downright dangerous. Being aware of the risks associated with a property, and the hazards it could potentially pose to your business, helps you make a sound site selection decision.

The easiest and best way to avoid threats to your new site, especially for a data center, is to select a site in a safe space with as few risk factors as possible. Some risk factors can be mitigated, but natural disasters are universal risk factors over which we have almost zero control.

With 11 storms before mid-July, the Weather Channel announced that the 2015 hurricane season was off to a “record start.” Wildfires are still burning in California and have already destroyed more than 8 million acres in the U.S. this year alone. To top it off, nearly 1,000 tornadoes have been recorded in 2015.

According to USAID, natural disasters took the lives of more than 18,000 people, affected nearly 107 million others and caused $97 billion in economic damage during 2014. The impact of natural disasters is hard to deny and protecting your business from natural disasters can save you millions. And it starts with picking a site that is statistically unlikely to experience such an event.

The nation’s leading source for comprehensive housing data, RealtyTrac®, recently released its 2015 U.S. Natural Disaster Housing Risk Report, which found that 43 percent of U.S. homes are in counties with high or very high natural hazard risk.

Overlaying RealtyTrac’s heat map with the AEPED coverage area highlights the low-risk areas that are overwhelmingly represented in our service territory.

Specific areas of note include Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas, and suburban Detroit, Michigan, which were named 5 of the Best Cities for Avoiding Natural Disasters in 2014, as well as Central Ohio. Central Ohio counties all scored low on RealtyTrac®’s 2015 Natural Disaster Housing Risk Report, putting them in the top 35 percent of the 2,318 U.S. counties ranked. Flooding was the only natural disaster that Central Ohio had even a moderate risk of experiencing.

AEP territory represents some of the best places in the U.S. to avoid natural disasters. Selecting a site in these safe zones protects your business and employees.

  • Data Centers