HAMMOND - The $40 million data center currently being built in Hammond has a new leader. The Digital Crossroads at Lake Michigan says David Hood will serve as managing director of operations. 

Hood most recently served as director of operations at New York-based Netrality Properties Inc., where he oversaw the development of a data center in Chicago. He is also the former president and chief executive officer of Backplane Integrated Networks Corp. 

Peter Feldman, CEO of Digital Crossroads, said in a news release Hood's skills are "second to none when it comes to managing the technical and operations sides of facilities."

"I’m very excited to get down to work," said Hood. "To be on the ground level of a design like this that’s going to change how data centers operate and impact the environment is going to be fantastic."

The 105,000-square-foot facility will include a data center and shared-space tech incubator. Construction on the project began in August and received final funding in January. Officials say the project could potentially grow to a $200 million complex with multiple buildings.