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The data center rundown: March

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Time flies! We’re already three months into the year and the data center industry has been moving full steam ahead. There’s been no shortage of news and developments. So, with that, let’s get into the third instalment of our monthly series and take a closer look at the biggest stories in the data center world in March.

Top data center news for March

More investment in Dallas

At the start of the month, Mitsubishi Corporation announced a joint venture partnership with Digital Realty to finance the building of two pre-leased data centers in Dallas, Texas.

This significant $800 million investment in Dallas marks Mitsubishi's strategic move to capitalize on the growing demand for data center services in the US. The two data centers, located in the Dallas metro area, have been under construction since late 2022, with the first phase set to deliver 16MW of capacity when it comes online later this year.

Mitsubishi is aiming to grow its DC business both domestically and internationally, betting on generative AI, semiconductors, and communication technologies.

Saudi set for mammoth cloud region

Amazon Web Services (AWS) unveiled plans to establish a cloud region in Saudi Arabia by 2026, marking a significant expansion of its global infrastructure footprint.

With a pledged investment of $5.3 billion, AWS says it aims to deliver secure, reliable, and scalable cloud computing resources to businesses and organizations in Saudi Arabia.

The initial launch of the region will include three Availability Zones, equivalent to three distinct and physically segregated data centers.

77MW data center proposed for East London

A new data center is being proposed in the Newham area of East London, UK. The listed applicant has links to UK operator Kao Data and its owners.

Data center developers SineQN and IXDS recently filed with Newham Council for planning permission to develop a multi-story data center totaling approximately 60,510 sqm (651,325 sq ft), an adjacent connected plant building, and an energy center on land at Bidder Street in Canning Town. It will be close to a number of new residential developments planned in the area.

Planning documents suggest the facility will be ‘one of the first new generation Urban Hyperscale data centers in London’.

US DC prices on the rise

Rising demand for artificial intelligence (AI) and limited data center capacity in North America have propelled data center prices up by 19%, according to a report by JLL and CBRE.

This surge reflects the growing need for computational power and storage infrastructure to support AI technologies across various industries. The shortage of available data center space has intensified competition among buyers, resulting in notable price hikes.

In the report, JLL’s managing director of data center markets, Andy Cvengros, said “Demand continues to be at all-time highs, and data center growth is rapidly expanding from core markets in search of power.”

Yondr powers up first data center campus in Malaysia

Yondr Group achieved a significant milestone in March, launching its inaugural data center campus in Malaysia just two years after entering the market.

Located in Johor’s Sedenak Tech Park, the campus is set to deliver 300MW of critical IT capacity when fully complete. It will see the development of multiple phases, with access to dark fibre connectivity, scalable utilities, and infrastructure.

Paul Dillon, Chief Development Officer at Yondr Group said, “Malaysia is a central data center corridor for Yondr and reflects our commitments for growth in APAC. The Johor development supports our global scaling strategy, which focuses on delivering cost-efficient, secure and scalable data centers, with sustainability at their heart.”

Meta to open $800m DC in Minnesota

Meta revealed plans to open an $800 million data center in Rosemount, Minnesota, in 2026.

Built by lead contractor Mortenson, the 715,000 square foot (66,425 sq m) data center will be delivered on a 280-acre site at UMore Park in Rosemount.

The new data center will support around 100 operational jobs and at least 1,000 skilled trade jobs at peak construction, the office of Governor Tim Walz claimed.

Nvidia hit the headlines... several times

Hardly surprising but March saw Nvidia in the news more than once or twice. First CEO Jensen Huang confirmed that an upcoming iteration of the company's server family will be liquid cooled.

Recently, the company unveiled its next-generation GPU family – the Blackwell. This new GPU architecture is designed to enable customers to develop and run real-time generative AI tasks on trillion-parameter large language models with a staggering 25 times reduction in cost and energy consumption compared to its predecessor, the Hopper series. Industry giants such as Amazon, Google, Meta, Microsoft, Oracle Cloud, and OpenAI have all announced plans to integrate Blackwell GPUs into their systems later this year.

Vertiv became a Solution Advisor in the Nvidia Partner Network assuming the role of a Consultant Partner in the Nvidia Partner Network (NPN). This designation grants wider access to Vertiv's extensive experience and full portfolio of power and cooling solutions. NPN is a global program for technology partners delivering solutions built on or powered by Nvidia technologies.

Meanwhile, Schneider Electric, a trailblazer in the digital evolution of energy management and automation, declared a partnership with Nvidia to enhance data center infrastructure. This collaboration aims to facilitate pioneering advancements in Edge artificial intelligence (AI) and digital twin technologies.

Construction struggles to keep pace

According to a report released by Linesight, the increased demand in the high-tech and data center sectors is exacerbating the challenges in the European construction industry.

Factors such as labor shortages, supply chain disruptions, and regulatory hurdles are cited as key contributors to this struggle. As a result, delays and cost overruns are becoming more common in tech infrastructure projects. Addressing these challenges will require collaborative efforts between the technology and construction industries to enhance project planning, streamline processes, and develop innovative solutions to meet the growing demand for tech-related infrastructure.

As always, it’s a challenge to select just a few of the latest news stories from the data center industry, as there is so much to choose from. And even as I write this, more announcements are being made. Keep an eye out for our April rundown of the latest data center news.

In the meantime, be sure to read what our Founder & CEO had to say about how the construction industry can meet the growing demand for data centers driven by AI:


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Steph Broadfield