Page-Designed Data Center Wins Global IT Award

The Uptime Institute supports the enterprise data center industry and its professionals through education, publications, consulting, certifications, conferences and seminars. They also are known for their prestigious annual Brill Awards for Efficient IT that recognize significant improvement of energy productivity and resource use in IT. Page is very proud to be part of a project team that is being acknowledged with a Brill Global Leadership Award for the design and construction of the United Airlines Data Center.

This is one of two Global Leadership awards being given in 2015, and is the Uptime Institute's highest level of recognition for exemplary submissions across multiple disciplines. The United Airlines Critical Infrastructure Team entry had submitted the project for consideration in three categories, Site Design, Facilities Management and IT Efficiency, and the Uptime Institute chose to elevate it to the Global Leadership category.

The United Airlines data center design is based on a unique combination of infrastructure components resulting in an efficient and highly reliable building. The new facility is the first of two centralized data centers that ultimately will condense eight older centers.

To meet that goal, United started on the design and buildout of a new greenfield 167,000 sq. ft. complex inclusive with a 25,000 sq. ft. 4 megawatt (expandable to 6 MW) data center in the Midwestern US. This data center was commissioned in October of 2013 and became operational in February of 2014, thanks to a packaged design for speed to market.

United also merged IT management structures when it developed the global Critical Infrastructure Services (CFS) to manage this new facility. This integrated structure remediated the traditional siloed nature of IT and facilities teams, and created a cooperative environment for buildout, maintenance, security and capacity planning for United's portfolio of critical IT resources.

Page was selected to design the project based on our firm's experience in next generation data center facilities.  We bring our multidisciplinary architectural and engineering services to a broad, open-minded planning perspective for mission critical facilities. Additionally, the judges noticed our holistic approach to sustainable design.

This data center was built to withstand severe weather conditions without compromising the integrity or security of its cooling system, which is anticipated to achieve an annual average mechanical PUE (power usage effectiveness) of 1.09. Its design will achieve energy savings of approximately 50 percent above the required efficiency standards with state-of-the-art economizer systems for cooling critical electrical rooms and air-handling units, an energy recovery make-up air handling unit for ventilation, high efficiency condensing boilers for heating and high efficiency lamps for lighting.

Under a full production scenario, all phases of the data center are anticipated to save the following in a 10-year lifecycle:

  • 420 million KWh of electricity
  • 115-plus million gallons of water
  • More than $35 million-plus in operational savings
  • 250,000-plus tons of CO2 reduction

The facility meets current Tier IV, Fault Tolerant Site Infrastructure, standards as well as the company's requirements. It was also certified LEED Silver for Energy & Environmental Design by the USGBC (United States Green Building Council).

The Brill Awards recognizes IT efficiency in five categories, across four global regions: North America, EMEA, Latin America and APAC. Categories were judged by in-region experts and global authorities with local expertise. Judges were drawn from the end user, vendor, and consulting communities to ensure the panel included a wide variety of perspectives.