Suburbs, Meet Server Farm
After making a splash in the city with a 450k SF data center at 840 S Canal, Server Farm Realty is reaching into the 'burbs with the $16.3M purchase of the Oak Brook Technology Center. (It's like an urban center except the Information Superhighway is filled with minivans.)
The new 194k SF heavy fiber facility, located at 800 and 810 Jorie Blvd in Oak Brook (snapped below), will expand offerings to current customers and open them up to new clients, Server Farm CEO Avner Papouchado (snapped doing cloud computing the old-fashioned way) tells us. While city users lean more toward content distribution and finance, the suburbs see more corporate, service providers, and telecom types. Current tenants at the 66% leased Oak Brook facility include XO Communication, NaviSite, Zayo, and US Signal. “Generally, what we buy has a lot of upside,” he says, mentioning some major capital input and system upgrades in the works.
Over at the $200M Canal Street site, the leases are multiplying. “We’re putting all the firepower behind it to make it the foremost data center in Chicago,” Avner says of the 40 MW facility, the company’s primary focus to fill in 2014. The key is flexible design and loads of spec space to show off the finished product. Since companies put off data center decisions until the 11th hour, there’s little time to waste when reconfiguring to their unique topologies. Looking forward, Avner expects the retail and wholesale markets to continue to converge, while the financing market will remain tough for spec but smooth for pre-leased (good luck) facilities.