Bouygues Construction has begun work on a vast data centre in Pantin, in the north-eastern outskirts of Paris. The first phase of the contract is worth a total of €75 million. When completed, the building, which will provide around 11,000 m² of computer room space, will be one of the largest data centres in France.
It is being constructed for Equinix, the world number one in data hosting.Scheduled for completion during the third quarter of 2012, the first phase of the project will call on the expertise of three of Bouygues Construction’s subsidiaries.
Developed by Sodéarif, the property development subsidiary of Bouygues Bâtiment Ile-de-France, in conjunction with RB-Architectes and Critical Building, the new data centre will be built by Brézillon, a subsidiary of Bouygues Bâtiment Ile-de-France, and ETDE, the energy and services division of Bouygues Construction. The largest data centre built by the Group, it will have electric power of roughly 1.5 kW per square metre when it is operating at full capacity. In all, it will have total IT power1 of 14,400 kW.
The construction of a data centre must meet very stringent criteria. The facility must be located in a flood-free and seismically stable zone and it requires a secure power supply and a reliable telecommunications network. The hygrometry rate (the amount of vapour contained in the air) and temperature of the building, which must remain below 23° C, need to be controlled permanently. The highly sophisticated security systems protecting the critical data housed in the centre include fire detection and extinction, anti-intrusion systems, video surveillance, access control and a biometric recognition system. Data centres are guarded round-the-clock by security personnel, and are among the world’s most reliable buildings.
Needs for new data centres are burgeoning because of the expansion of the Internet and the rise of cloud computing (i.e. externalised IT resources). Bouygues Construction has developed a turnkey offer to meet the expectations of this fast growing sector. Thanks to its various subsidiaries, the Group is positioned as a full-service provider on the data centre market, able to provide expertise, according to its customers’ wishes, in the definition of needs, finance, design and construction of the site (building and technical installation), operation and maintenance.
With a strong commitment to sustainable construction, the Group employs solutions to reduce the energy consumption of data centres, selecting the most efficient electrical equipment and installing free cooling (i.e. using external air to cool computer rooms). All the techniques employed make it possible to reduce the electricity consumption of a data centre by around 50%.
Since 2007, Bouygues Construction has completed and delivered more than ten data centres in France and the United Kingdom. It has worked for four of the world’s five largest hosting services. In particular, the Group handed over two data centres to Interxion, one of the leading European providers of data centre facilities, in 2007 and 2009. Several other projects are either in development or under construction.