Three $50 million data centres planned for Sydney in 2009

DA lodged for $2 billion gas-powered centre

Data storage centre developer and owner, Technical Real Estate (TRE), has received development approval for its multi-million dollar next-generation data centre in Sydney's Norwest business park, which is expected to open for business in the first quarter of 2009.

TRE's state-of-the-art facility will be the first of its kind in the Australian market, spanning almost 3,000 square metres (sqm) of energy-efficient data storage space.

Construction of the Norwest project will commence this month in conjunction with European-based data storage infrastructure provider, Galileo Connect.

The Norwest facility will comprise three $50 million high-density data centres, each with a technical area of 1,000 sqm and an IT load power ranging from 1,000 to 2,000 watts per square metre.

TRE director, Stephen Ellis, said most Australian data centres are more than 20 years old and can no longer sustain the technical loads required by new technologies.

He said there is a lot of data centre demand from the growing number of multi-national companies operating in Sydney.

"Safe data storage has become a priority issue for companies at the board level and for regulators following a number of serious technical failures related to insufficient data storage capabilities and resources in recent years," Ellis said.

"We have had strong interest from senior financial and information officers who are looking to use the facility either as a primary storage resource or as a part of their business continuity program."

Norwest is the first of a series of data centre projects TRE will roll out in the next few years.

The company is part of a consortium with Galileo and ActewAGL that last week lodged a development application for a $2 billion gas-powered data centre in Canberra.

If approved, this centre will be developed over the next decade, with the first stage due to open in 2009.

Based on the strong interest received in the Norwest project, and the sharpened awareness among corporate users of the constraints to existing data storage capacity, TRE has also moved to the initial planning phase of development for a second facility in Sydney.

Ellis said Australia was lagging behind Europe in terms of developing sophisticated and environmentally enhanced data storage facilities, with investment in European facilities spurred by the European Union's carbon emissions trading scheme.

"But with ratification of the Kyoto Protocol we expect the Rudd Government will continue to provide the impetus for the business community to take responsibility for energy-efficient data storage sooner rather than later," he said. Established in 2007, TRE is a specialist data centre developer and owner.

It is a subsidiary of Thakral Holdings Group, a publicly listed company with a property portfolio of over $1.4 billion and a development pipeline valued at over $750 million.

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