Switch's Las Vegas 10 data center (Photo: Switch)

Switch’s Las Vegas Data Center Stronghold Reaches North of 2 Million Square Feet

Switch has officially launched the latest massive facility on its homebase Las Vegas data center campus, bringing its total capacity in Sin City to more than 2 million square feet and about 315MW.

Switch, the largest data center provider in Vegas, recently started expanding to other markets. Known for its proprietary data center design, futuristic interiors, and ex-military security guards armed with machine guns, the company builds hyper-scale colocation facilities and lists among its top customers Amazon Web Services, eBay, Hulu, and NASA.

Its latest Las Vegas 10 data center adds about 350,000 square feet of data center space and can provide up to 40MW of power. It is designed to the same specifications as the previously existing Las Vegas 8 and Las Vegas 9 facilities.

The design, according to Switch, is a brain child of its founder and CEO, Rob Roy, who designed everything from mechanical and electrical systems to the roof and conference-room interiors. The company leans heavily on its data center design for setting itself apart from competitors, and earlier this month announced its own design standard, called Tier 5 Platinum, which includes a long list of characteristics that aren’t covered by the industry’s most widely used and recognized data center design rating system created by the Uptime Institute.

Switch had portions of Las Vegas 8 and 9 data centers certified by Uptime. Both received Tier IV Gold certification, the highest rating in the system designed to evaluate data center infrastructure reliability. Switch said it would not pursue Uptime certification for any of its future facilities because the system doesn’t take into account elements such as network carrier redundancy and availability of renewable energy, among many others. It also complained that Uptime doesn’t do enough to police misuse of its terminology by data center providers.

Read more: Switch Backs Away from Uptime’s Tiers, Pushes Own Data Center Standard

Switch’s current design is called Switch MOD 250 (Modularly Optimized Design). Modularity enables data center providers to expand capacity in a building quickly by installing standardized, pre-fabricated infrastructure components.

The company launched its first non-Las Vegas data center in February of this year. The first building on its Citadel Campus outside of Reno, Nevada, has eBay as the anchor tenant and measures 1.3 million square feet; it can support up to 130MW of power. The following month Switch announced the launch of a data center in Michigan, inside a re-purposed pyramid-shaped former office building, and in May said it had secured land to build data centers in Atlanta.

The company is also building data centers in Italy and Thailand. Both international projects are partnerships with local investors.

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About the Author

San Francisco-based business and technology journalist. Editor in chief at Data Center Knowledge, covering the global data center industry.

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