Cobalt Opens Cheyenne Data Center in Las Vegas
February 8th, 2013 By: Jason Verge
Cobalt Data Centers has opened the doors on the first of two planned Tier 3-compliant data centers in Las Vegas. Cobalt Cheyenne is a 34,000 square foot facility backed by 5.5 megawatts of critical power. The facility is located on West Cheyenne Avenue, 20 minutes from the Las Vegas Strip and 10 minutes from the Red Rock recreation area. It has room for more than 450 cabinets, and it supports 300 watts per square foot densities throughout, with higher density up to 600 watts per square foot available.
The company fell in love with the site from the begining. “This was an enterprise data center for a dot-com that put a lot of money into the infrastructure,” said Mike Ballard, CEO at Cobalt Data Centers. “When we saw the building, we decided to make this our priority.” The facility is loaded with amenities, including private offices, a lounge, a business center and even showers are available for client use.
Yesterday Cobalt held a ribbon cutting cermony with Las Vegas Mayor Pro Tem Stavros Anthony, who toured the center with other business leaders and Cobalt’s principals: Ballard, Joseph Gallagher, Russ Ketchum, Mark Hanson and Tom Harris.
“Showcase for the Industry”
“Our data centers and Las Vegas Peering and Internet Exchange (LV-PIX), which provides superior fiber connectivity, will serve as fundamental infrastructure supporting the development of the growing technology industry in Las Vegas,” said Mike Ballard, who serves as chief executive officer of Cobalt Data Centers. “We are very excited to be a part of the city’s success and technology diversification. Our Cobalt Cheyenne site is a showcase for the industry on how data centers can be designed and operated in alignment with community interest and environmental stewardship.”
Cobalt has already signed clients in gaming, health care, cloud computing and managed services, and the company says it is seeing significant demand from prospects based in Chicago, Texas, and California companies, as well as providers seeking to serve those markets. The firm is expecting to employ 20 people directly within its first year.
The Cheyenne facility incorporates a high density, distributed power infrastructure. The electrical design is a modular, expandable system providing 2(N+1). Generator capacity is 9.0 MVA with six generators, while UPS capacity is 4.5 MVA in six 750KVA UPS in a tri-redundant system design.
Cobalt’s electrical system was designed by Harris Consulting Engineers and allows for multiple redundancies in all critical components. The building’s architect was Dan Ballard of Ethos Three Architecture, and the general contractor was Burke Construction Group, a 28-year-old, award-winning construction company in Las Vegas.
Cobalt controls an additional site for large-scale deployment and wholesale operation at the Las Vegas “carrier row” on Sahara Avenue.
The Las Vegas Market
The opening of Cobalt Cheyenne is the latest in a series of indicators of the growth of Las Vegas and Nevada as a data center destination.
“Nevada is known for having an attractive tax environment, and Las Vegas is well protected from natural disasters,” said Everett Thompson, chief executive officer of Wired Real Estate Group Inc., a leading data center advisory firm and Cobalt strategic partner. “With multiple clients already installed within their first 30 days of operations, it’s apparent that the Las Vegas market was in need of a high-touch, alternative provider. With a large footprint of both retail and wholesale space, Cobalt is well positioned to become a national brand.”
“The (Las Vegas) market is attractive for a couple of reasons,” said Ballard. “It’s been dominated by one company for the last several years, so there’s an opening for a high service provider.” Ballard says the company underwent several focus groups to determine what people wanted in a colocation provider, “one of the biggest demands was flexibility. They wanted a colocation provider to be able to work with them, to not provide a cookie cutter experience.”
Cobalt’s executive team has a long legacy of data center design and development in Las Vegas and Silicon Valley, with members having held senior management positions with brands such as Switch Communications, Marquisnet (now zColo), Exchange@200 Paul, and others.