News Column

West Chester data center already planning next expansion

August 21, 2014

By Chelsey Levingston, Journal-News, Hamilton, Ohio

Aug. 21--WEST CHESTER TWP -- Data center Peak 10 Inc. this month completed an approximately 5,000-square-foot expansion of its West Chester Twp. facility. Its grown as more companies outsource information technology functions.

The Charlotte, N.C.-based company, which opened the Cincinnati-area office in 2008, sells data storage, security and recovery services to businesses. Instead of customers keeping information technology services and infrastructure on-site, business customers buy floor space for servers, power and Internet bandwidth from companies such as Peak 10, Cyrus One and other data centers, said Dan Doerflein, vice president and general manager for Peak 10's greater Cincinnati operations.

The additional space, which was leased and built out to the company's specifications, brings Peak 10's total footprint at 5307 Muhlhauser Road to roughly 27,000-square-feet.

"Many companies today are looking to more of a cloud strategy for their infrastructure," Doerflein said.

"One of the main reasons is many companies today have decided they don't want to be in the infrastructure business, they don't want to be in the computer business," he said. "They would rather pay a monthly fee like a light bill."

Founded in 2000, Peak 10 operates 24 data centers in 10 U.S. markets including three locations in Louisville, Ky. The West Chester Twp. center is the only one in Ohio for now, Doerflein said.

The local center employs about 18 people.

Around-the-clock security guards the data center. Rows of black cabinets housing servers, switches and routers sit on raised floors. The temperature is typically maintained at 70 degrees by large chillers, said Rich Farmer, facility operations engineer for Peak 10 in West Chester Twp.

Over-pressurized air squeezes dust out of the rooms. Specialized early smoke detectors fixed on the wall are meant to sniff out a spark before it becomes a blazing fire, Farmer said.

The goal of a data center is to keep remotely located computers running no matter what happens, using methods that withstand multiple equipment failures, Farmer said. There's backups for backups.

Peak 10 celebrated Wednesday its completed expansion, but is already planning for the next one, Doerflein said. The company has contracted for another 22,000-square-feet of space in the adjacent building to open in 2015, once the recently added room is sold, he said.

"There's no question that requirements for data storage are only going to grow," he said.


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Source: Hamilton Journal News (OH)

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