T5 Data Centers is developing a major project in Colorado Springs. Pictured are Craig McKesson of T5 Data Centers, Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper, Robert Branson of Iron Point Partners, and Vince Colarelli of T5 Data Centers. (Photo: T5 Data Centers)
T5 Data Centers has unveiled plans for an $800 million data center campus in Colorado Springs, Colorado. The project marks a major step forward in Colorado Springs' ambitions as a data center destination, and continues a steady expansion by Atlanta-based T5.
Colorado Springs has been a potential data center hotspot for a while, thanks to cheap power rates and its free cooling-friendly environment - it's part of the reason T5 Data Centers was attracted to the region for its sixth complex.
T5@Colorado is situated on 64 acres of land, with completion of the first phase of the project expected by the first quarter of 2014. The campus will offer 100 MW of available power, with power rates of 4.4 cents per kilowatt hour and potential to use free cooling for up to 97 percent of the year, according to T5.
"Ideal Location" for Data Centers
"Colorado Springs is the ideal location for the next phase of our expansion," said Peter Marin, President and CEO of T5 Data Centers. "This is a vibrant, growing area with a strong and supportive business climate, and the proximity to Denver, as well as local colleges and military installations, gives us access to terrific talent and local resources. We want this new data center campus to be groundbreaking as an eco-friendly green facility, offering our customers the best possible enterprise infrastructure and support services at competitive rates."
Colorado Springs is home to numerous colleges and the Air Force Academy, as well as an active community of contractors working with the military.
T5 currently offers wholesale data center space in business-critical data center facilities in Atlanta, Los Angeles, Dallas, and Charlotte with new projects announced in Portland and Colorado.
As part of T5’s larger strategy of leveraging free cooling, the new Colorado Springs campus will be able to take advantage of the high plains climate by using the cooler, drier external air to reduce air conditioning and operating costs. The location is also strategically placed close to the Denver Technology Center, a tech and communications hub, and will serve as a central data relay center to lower latency for business-critical enterprise applications country-wide.
T5 executives anticipate that the new data center campus will create 400 to 600 new jobs in the area
Bringing Data Centers to Colorado Springs
There have been several efforts to bring data centers to Colorado Springs over the years. Benefits of the region include tax incentives, cheap power rates, a data center-friendly business atmosphere, an environment relatively free of natural disasters (though wildfires are arguably a threat) and a climate ideal for free cooling.
In 2011, Wal-Mart and FedEx announced Colorado Springs as the home of new facilities, attracted to the region thanks to both tax incentives and the ability to build environmentally sustainable facilities. The city of 426,000 located about 60 miles south of Denver, is also home to existing data centers for Verizon Wireless, HP, FedEx, T. Rowe Price, Progressive, HP and Intel, among others.