ViaWest to Construct Fifth Colorado Data Center

ViaWest recently announced plans to expand its Colorado data center presence with its fifth facility in the Denver area.

The new 210,000-square-foot facility, Compark, will be in the southeast section of the city. The build is scheduled to be completed by the first quarter of 2014.

The Colorado area has grown increasingly attractive to data center and technology companies as its geographic environment offers little risk of natural disaster, a key factor for such enterprises. Colorado CIO Kristin Russell said that ViaWest’s continued growth within the area indicates the state’s expansion of its technology sector.

ViaWest stated its newest facility aims to meet increasing in-market and out-of-market demands of customers seeking to store and protect data. Company representatives stated that they look forward to growing their data center footprint in their home state.

“As a Denver-based company for more than fourteen years, we are proud to expand our presence in this region to further serve our existing customers and meet the strong demand we’re seeing nationwide,” said ViaWest president and CEO Nancy Phillips. “Our dedication to delivering high-touch customer service and a growth path of IT capabilities continues to uniquely position us in the market.”

Data Center Design
The data center design for the new facility includes raised floor space of 140,000 square feet as well as a targeted 1.2 PUE rate, which would be one of the lowest in the industry.

In addition, ViaWest will construct the facility according to Uptime Institute standards for Tier IV data center design. According to the company, a data center of this certification builds upon the standards of a Tier III facility and adds several factors for the increased reliability of distribution paths. The paths must be active at all times and be physically isolated. The cooling system of a Tier IV certified facility must also be able to withstand power losses and other failures.

“The key requirements for a Tier IV site are that a single failure of any capacity system, capacity component, or distribution element will not impact the computer equipment, and that the system itself automatically responds (‘self-heals’) to a failure to prevent further impact to the site,” ViaWest stated.

Data Center Tax Incentives
Another attractive aspect of locating a data center in Colorado is the state’s industry-friendly tax environment.

According to the Denver Business Journal, the Colorado Economic Development Commission approved a $50,000 data center tax incentive to motivate the $208 million construction project. In return, ViaWest agreed to provide employment for 25 local individuals with $60,000 in annual compensation. The salary offers a 13 percent increase over average wages in Douglas County.

Additionally, Michelle Hadwiger, director of business development for the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade, told the Journal that local officials will also invest $326 million in ViaWest’s facility over a seven year period. The incentives will help ViaWest complete its Colorado project while enabling the company to continue constructing its Minnesota data center on schedule.

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