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Wait, Now (Data) Servers Want Amenities?

Wait, Now (Data) Servers Want Amenities?
We knew data centers demanded energy and temperature control, but now they're getting real picky: they want a view.
Ed Doyne and a rep from Hines REIT on a deck at Fisher Plaza near the Space Needle.
And you'll get one at Fisher Plaza, which is adding another 24k SF to its already giant downtown data center space. We tagged along on a site tour with Broderick Group's Tyler Slone last week. Above, guides Ed Doyne of Egis7 and Shane Fentress of building manager Hines on Fisher's sixth-floor deck. (We're not kidding about the view. The Space Needle is right off to Ed's right.) Now, the fifth and sixth floors are office space, but that's going to change within the next few months, Ed says. 10k SF were freed when Hines bought the building in late 2011, and conversion of the sixth-floor office space will open up another 14k.
Ed Doyne of Egis7 gives a tour of the interior of Fisher Plaza.
To paraphrase Martha Stewart, candy-colored casings brighten up any server room. Once you get away from the windows, it's all very Bourne Identity inside Fisher Plaza, where 15 companies are running glass fiber thinner than blades of grass throughout both buildings. Fisher Plaza, completed in 2003, takes security seriously—with retinal scans and palm scanners—but perhaps the most important thing is "redundancy and diversity," Ed says. (And don't forget redundancy.) Fisher is the only project in the CBD with two redundant electrical vaults. There are also extra chillers, eight—soon to be nine—backup generators, storage tanks for 75,000 gallons of diesel and 10,000 gallons of jet fuel for the helicopter.
The KOMO 4 newsroom, prepping for the 5 o'clock news.
Fisher Plaza is probably best known as the HQ for ABC affiliate Komo 4 News and its iconic broadcasters. If you stroll the halls long enough, you'll bump into a celebrity stopping by for an interview. (Or maybe you'll just see weatherman Steve Pool, whom we're told sports snakeskin shoes.) We snuck into the newsroom just as it was being prepped for the 5 o'clock news.
The Museum of History and Industry's exhibit celebrating Fisher Broadcasting's centennial.
Look familiar? It's the Museum of History and Industry's exhibit commemorating Fisher Broadcasting. A century ago, Harbor Island flour mill proprietor O.D. Fisher was approached by a young man who had a license for a radio station but no money to start one. OD, sensing a way to push flour at consumers, established the Fisher Blend Station. Today's Fisher Plaza buildings are not just a place to put data centers—"the West building was built to be the data center," Ed says. Ed, by the way, was in Nepal while Hines was conducting due diligence to buy the building. He kept in contact via another new communication mechanism, Skype. "There were a lot of meetings in the middle of the night," he says.