Vantage Data Centers is doing double duty to address the limited supply of data center space in Santa Clara, the primary data hub in Silicon Valley. The company is commencing construction this week on the new V5 data center on its Santa Clara campus, even as it continues work on its V6 facility on an adjacent property. Between the two properties, Vantage has 24 megawatts of data center capacity under construction.
To make the most of its real estate, Vantage is building up. V5 will be a four-story data center, the tallest the company has built. It reflects the trend in Santa Clara, where CoreSite recently completed a four-story facility.
“Land is highly constrained here,” said Sureel Choksi, the president and CEO of Vantage Data Centers. “Because there’s not much land here, data centers are being built taller to maximize capacity. I think that’s we’ll continue to see that across the industry.”
Tight Supply in Santa Clara
That’s one of the reasons why supply is limited in Santa Clara, the primary data hub in Silicon Valley, where municipal utility Silicon Valley Power offers cheaper rates than surrounding towns served by PG&E.
“For the last 10 years this has been a consistently strong market,” said Choksi, who said the market has seen average annual leasing of about 28 megawatts. “Because Santa Clara is the place to be in Silicon Valley, supply has become quite tight.”
The new construction comes amid media reports that Vantage is in the process of being acquired by Digital Bridge, which has previously acquired DataBank and C7 Data Centers. Choksi declined comment on the reports, but said the Vantage team remains focused on delivering new capacity.
“The addition of the new V5 and V6 facilities to our campus reinforces our commitment to providing the capacity our customers need to grow and expand in Santa Clara,” said Choksi. “We are very grateful for the continuing support of the City of Santa Clara and Silicon Valley Power (SVP) in helping us fuel continued expansion and innovation in the region.”
Construction on V5 will begin next week, as the City of Santa Clara has approved the permits and entitlements. The building will house electrical and mechanical infrastructure on its first floor, with 15 megawatts (MW) of raised-floor data center space spread across the three upper floors. Two floors will offer 4.5 megawatts of space, with a 6 megawatts of capacity for the other floor, allowing support for customers seeking higher power densities.
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Slab or Raised Floor?
V5 is being built in a portion of the Vantage property that was previously a parking lot. The parking lots have been relocated across the street, where Vantage is building V6 – a two-story building that will bring 9 megawatts of capacity online in the third quarter of this year. The V6 design features a slab instead of the raised floor seen in V5, offering choice for Vantage’s customers.
“We will be offering a range of power densities and products to meet the needs of a variety of customers and industry segments,” said Choksi. “Not all customers are the same.”
Vantage is a leading beneficiary of the growing interest in variable resiliency, featuring data halls with less elaborate backup power infrastructure than traditional data centers. The company has won multiple deals for lab-style environments, whose high-density compute loads aren’t usually mission critical.
New Campus in the Works
As it accelerates construction, Vantage is also expanding its on-site substation by adding a third 50 megawatt transformer, increase the total capacity of its main campuse to 150MW.
“When we initally master-planned the campus, the two 50 megawatt substations were more than adequate,” said Choksi. “But we’ve got land on the campus, and we’ve got customers who are growing with us. We serve a high-growth demographic. It became clear that power was the constraint.”
Vantage is now preparing for its next phase of growth. The company has also lined up a 9-acre site on Mathew Street in Santa Clara for a major new cloud campus, which will be home to four data centers offering 69 megawatts of critical IT load. Development is scheduled to begin in 2018 at the Mathew Campus, which is adjacent to large data centers operated by Digital Realty Trust and DuPont Fabros.
“The location is ideal,” said Choksi. “You’ve got large customers already in those facilities.”
Vantage Data Centers was founded in 2010 with backing from private equity firm Silver Lake Partners. The company acquired and redeveloped an Intel data center campus in Santa Clara. Vantage also operates a data center campus in Quincy, Washington.