The World's Largest Raised Floor?
April 20th, 2009 By: Rich Miller
As a leading vendor of tiles for raised floors, Tate has helped customers install more than 450 million square feet of its products. But i/o Data Centers’ new Phoenix ONE data center will be its largest installation project ever in a single data center facility, with a raised-floor area spanning more than 460,000 square feet.
The massive project will be completed in three phases, with the first 180,000 square feet scheduled for completion by June 1. This will be followed by a second and third phases of 180,000 and 100,000 square feet, respectively.
“We are fortunate to be profitable, well-capitalized and growing despite the economy,” said Anthony Wanger, president and founder of i/o Data Centers. “There was no question that we would incorporate raised flooring into our Phoenix ONE data center and we knew that industry-leader Tate was the right choice for a project of this magnitude.”
The Phoenix ONE project is fully funded following a $56 million equity investment in i/o Data Centers by Sterling Partners, which also backed the company’s first project, the 125,000 square foot Scottsdale ONE data center. The 530,000 square foot facility near Sky Harbor Airport was built in 2005 to house the bottling operations of LeNature’s Beverages, which never fully occupied the building before filing for bankruptcy.
The 31-acre campus currently has 40 megawatts of power and an on-site substation, and will eventually expand its total campus capacity to 120 megawatts. i/o Data Centers has signed a 20-year lease with landlord CBRE Investors, and plans to use the site as both a data center and its corporate headquarters.
Raised access floors are used to support and cool data center equipment, with cold air delivered under the floor and then directed into the data center through openings in floor tiles. In many configurations, cabling is also run underneath the floor. As data centers have increased the power densities of their equipment areas, many have increased the height of their raised-floor area to accommodate additional cooling capacity. Some new data centers are being designed with raised floors of 36 inches, and even 48 inches. Alternate designs place the equipment on a slab and deliver the cooling via overhead ducting.
“Over the last several years we’ve seen increased interest in the use of raised access floors with underfloor service distribution as a way to improve indoor air quality, help make buildings more energy efficient, promote sustainable building practices and achieve LEED certification,” said Bill Reynolds, director of marketing at Tate. “Now, with the slowdown in construction due to the economy, it’s fascinating to see a return to a part of the business that gave us our earliest start – despite market challenges.”
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