Equinix has completed the first of two construction phases on the fifth floor of NAP of the Americas, Miami’s big data center and interconnection hub that serves as the biggest gateway the world’s data traffic travels through to reach markets in Latin America and the Caribbean.
The phase, which cost Equinix $60 million to build, adds enough space for more than 1,000 cabinets and 4MW of UPS-backed power, bringing the facility’s total capacity to about 6,500 cabinets. It opens up the sought-after data center to customers who need larger, 100-cabinet or so, footprints, Chris Kimm, senior VP of operations for Equinix Americas, wrote in a blog post.
The NAP was one of 29 data centers Equinix acquired from Verizon in 2016. Because of the concentration of networks clients can access there, it was the most strategically important facility in the portfolio – the crown jewel in the $3.6 billion deal.
Before the fifth-floor buildout, there had been data center space on floors two through four. Neither of those floors had enough room left to accommodate a 100-cabinet single-client footprint, it appears, based on Kimm’s post.
Equinix is also spiffing up the ground floor, building a new entrance and lobby to “reflect the Equinix brand and improve the function of the customer security area,” Kimm wrote. The company expects to complete those improvements by next February.
Miami is where most Latin American networks peer with each other, and NAP of the Americas, which Equinix now calls MI1, is the biggest peering location in the city. It’s also where Latin American network operators get access to submarine cables that land in Miami, carrying traffic destined for Latin American markets.
Because of the oversize role it plays in Latin American connectivity, the building is the place to be for companies from other parts of the world that want to do business in Latin America.
About half of the 130 or so carriers with network points of presence in MI1 are based in Latin American and Caribbean markets, according to Kimm. And most of the traffic from those markets destined for the rest of the world travels through the facility, he wrote.