Monsanto has completed construction of a new data center at its headquarters campus in Creve Coeur, Mo., and said it expects the facility to be certified as a Leadership in Energy Efficient Design (LEED) facility in spring of 2008. The LEED program, administered by the U.S. Green Buildings Council, is the national benchmark for the design and construction of high performance green buildings. Monsanto says its facility will be the first LEED certified data center in the state of Missouri, and the third LEED certified data center in the country. The Highmark Data Center in West Hanover, Pa. and the FNMA Technology Center in Urbana, Md. have previously been certified as LEED data centers.
Many other companies have announced projects that they expect will be certified under the LEED program upon completion. These include 365 Main, a Pelio & Associates facility in Santa Clara, a Digital Realty Trust data center in Chicago, a Citigroup facility in Frankfurt, Germany and The Los Angeles County Data Center.
Monsanto's $21 million, 40,000 square-foot building will Monsanto's vast computing network, which supports business functions ranging from analyzing data collected for molecular breeding to processing a customer's seed order information, the company said.
"The data center is an integral part of our business, both in delivering high quality products for the farm and for improving the customer experience," said Mark Showers, chief information officer for Monsanto. "Every day Monsanto scientists analyze terabytes of data collected from laboratories, field trials, and breeding stations around the world. This requires considerable speed and technology to quickly and accurately process such massive amounts of data into manageable, digestible information that we can use to make important business decisions like which drought-tolerant gene will be advanced to the next phase of the product pipeline."
Construction of the building began early in 2006. In addition to the efficient design, the center was built to withstand a tornado producing up to 200 mile-per-hour winds and an earthquake measuring up to 5.0 on the Richter scale. Monsanto used Fox Architects to design the facility, with William Tao & Associates as the lead engineering firm.