We hear a lot about the construction projects around world by national and international colocation providers, but there are some major projects going on at the regional level as well. Down in Texas, Data Foundry is making a big bet on a brand new 250,000 square foot facility in Austin originally called ADC2 but which is being renamed as Texas 1. Data Foundry owns and operates several smaller data centers in Texas, but nothing of this scale until now. The privately held company's heritage derives from its days as the ISP Texas.Net back in the 90s, and they have deep, longstanding relationships throughout the region. They broke ground on the Texas 1 in August, and as you can see in the image fragment to the left from their construction blog, the structure is starting to take shape. With us today to offer some additional detail on Data Foundry's plans is the company's President and CFO, Shane Menking.
TR: You broke ground on Texas 1 in August 2010, how is the construction going thus far? When do you expect it to be ready?
SM: Construction is right on schedule and thus in accordance with the plan to go live with the site in June 2011.
TR: What makes Austin an attractive place to build a large colocation facility?
SM: The City of Austin has several advantages for companies requiring large scale colocation, for the following reasons:
- Austin is a centrally located city within the United States and is easy to get to from both the West and East coasts.
- Austin is one of the safest cities in the United States in terms of natural disaster risks – far from flood plains, hurricane and earthquake zones.
- Austin has very stable, reliable and affordable power, which is connected to the independent Texas power grid.
- Austin has a long, well-earned reputation as a high-tech city with a highly educated and skilled workforce.
TR: You're positioning Texas 1 for disaster recovery planning, what makes it ideal for that application?
SM: Quite simply, Texas 1 is perfect for disaster recovery and business continuity planning for all of the reasons stated above. Austin is an ideal location for large-scale colocation. Companies with operations centered in higher disaster risk areas, such as throughout the state of California or in coastal cities like Houston need to feel confident knowing that their disaster recovery operations are located in a safe, reliable, easily accessible location that is completely separated from their local risks. Our offering also includes dedicated offices and workspace for remote worksite options so that client's can continue their operations and business in the event their home location is at risk.
TR: What type of redundancy are you building into the facility?
SM: The land for the Data Ranch campus where Texas 1 will reside was selected because of the ability for it to provide fully redundant power, water and telecom feeds to the site. Data Foundry will build additional data center facilities on the Data Ranch campus in the future with over 25 acres slated for further development - so it is paramount to have the redundancy built into every level – campus-wide.
- The Data Ranch campus is fed by dual power feeds from two independent 400MW capable substations, including end to end underground power feeds. The Data Ranch campus has conduit, which can deliver up to 100MW of power from these two feeds, providing redundant primary power to any data center on the campus.
- The Data Ranch campus is fed by dual-independent water utility feeds, which will provide redundant water supply to the chilled water systems for all data centers on the campus.
- The Data Ranch campus has access to a minimum of 15 telecom carriers, all of which will have dual fiber entrances to any building on the campus.
TR: How about connectivity, are there many fiber options available to customers from the site?
SM: All Data Foundry data centers are carrier neutral facilities. Data Foundry intends to bring a minimum of 15 telecom carriers into Texas 1, as well as to all future data centers at the Data Ranch.
TR: What types of customers does Data Foundry target?
SM: Data Foundry serves a wide range of customers. We target traditional Enterprise users in the Financial, Energy, Retail and Healthcare verticals; technology companies including High Performance Computing, ASPs, SaaS providers, Cloud Service Providers, IT Service Providers, and Hosting Providers; and a large number of small and medium size enterprises. Our facility was designed to support this wide range of clients offering single cabinets up to several thousand square foot configurations, and power densities for everything from tape drives to supercomputers. Clients can even secure fully enclosed private data suites starting at only 2500 square feet – with cost-effective high level features for small to medium sized clients that were once only available to large multi-megawatt deployments. For customers with super high density footprints, our private data suites also offer the ability to install water cooled cabinets which will support bleeding edge high performance computing while still maintaining a low carbon footprint.
TR: Have you seen early demand for space in Texas 1?
SM: Yes. We already signed many new customers, which are initially building out in our first Austin data center, ADC1, with expansion plans into Texas 1 once its completed. We are also working with a number of companies planning initial deployments into Texas 1 next year.
TR: Do you have further construction projects planned? Where?
SM: The Data Ranch campus was selected as it allows us to build several data centers on the 40-acre campus. Texas 1 is a two phase 250,000-square foot build. We anticipate building similar projects in other cities.
TR: Thank you for talking with Telecom Ramblings!