STACK Infrastructure has announced a significant expansion of its Chicago data center campus, with plans to add at least 20 megawatts of capacity. The future development will be adjacent to STACK’s existing facility, which currently offers 13MW of critical power and 221,000 square feet of space.
“Chicago is one of a number of important and growing markets for our clients, and as a result, it is a key market for STACK. We’re committed to investing here so that we can continue to support our clients and stay ahead of their needs,” said Brian Cox, Chief Executive Officer of STACK. “In keeping with our core commitment to being a trusted partner, this project delivers on our promise to strategically evolve and align our offering with our clients’ growth trajectories.”
STACK Infrastructure was formed by investor IPI Data Center Partners with assets acquired from Infomart Data Centers and T5 Data Centers, giving it a national footprint of eight data centers in six markets spanning 1.5 million feet of space and 100 megawatts of capacity. The company has since announced plans to add a large campus in Fort Worth at the Alliance Texas business park, giving it a footprint in Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas/Fort Worth, Northern Virginia, Silicon Valley and Portland, Oregon.
The STACK Chicago facility is located in Elk Grove Village in the Suburban Chicago market. The facility was built by Forsythe Data Centers, which sold the building to T5 in 2016 and continues as a tenant.
Cox said STACK intends to “think big” as it develops data center capacity for hyperscale operators, who are seeking to manage the rapid growth in cloud computing and social business. STACK’s strategy will feature a combination of “rack-ready” wholesale space for immediate delivery (Ready STACK), rapid development of powered shell data halls for larger requirements (Power STACK), and build-to-suit projects for entire campuses (Hyper STACK).
In February STACK lined up $850 million to finance the growth of its data center infrastructure. The funds will be used for expanding STACK’s existing data centers and expanding into new markets, the company said. The STACK funding will use securitized notes, a strategy which allows the company to borrow money at a lower interest rate.
In a securitization financing, a company creates a security based on the creditworthiness of a specific pool of assets, rather than the entire company. Data center developers can issue debt notes backed by cash flow from operational data centers, which are leased by some of the world’s largest and most credit-worthy companies. That tenant credit quality enables the issuer to pay lower interest rates on its debt, which reduces its costs as it seeks to compete and build additional facilities.
The greater Chicago market is home to more than 1.85 million square feet (SF) of commissioned data center space, representing 210 megawatts (MW) of commissioned power, according to datacenterHawk, a Dallas-based research firm that tracks the availability of data center space. The Chicago data center market appears poised for growth, with up to 200 MW of additional capacity planned for coming years.
For more on the Chicago market, we invite you to download the Data Center Frontier Special Report: The Chicago Data Center Market.