New R15-billion data centre being built in Johannesburg

Vantage Data Centres has announced it has begun construction on a new R15‐billion state-of-the-art data centre campus in Waterfall, Gauteng.

The first phase of the 80MW campus is scheduled to come online in the third quarter of 2022.

It will be the company’s first hyperscale data centre in South Africa and on the African continent.

Hyperscale data centres are large facilities that provide computing capability to large tech companies, cloud providers, and enterprises.

Vantage Data Centres said the carrier-neutral campus will comprise three facilities across 12 hectares, with 60,000 square meters of data centre space once fully developed, making it the largest on the continent.

Vantage EMEA president Antoine Boniface said Johannesburg was a data centre hub due to its strategic location, IT ecosystem, fibre connectivity to the rest of Africa, and the availability of renewable energy.

“We look forward to not only opening the doors of our first African facility to our customers but also to becoming part of the local community,” said Boniface.

Waterfall City and Waterfall Logistics Hub developer Attacq is partnering with Vantage to develop the campus.

Attacq CEO Jackie van Niekerk said Waterfall City had an established track record of attracting leading international businesses such as BMW, PwC, Massbuild, Cotton On, and Cummins to the precinct.

A render of the envisioned data centre campus upon completion.

The project will increase Vantage’s global footprint to five continents.

After launching in the US, Vantage moved into two Canadian markets in early 2019 and later expanded to six European markets in 2020 and five in Asia-Pacific in 2021.

Vantage said the Waterfall campus will be built on its standardised campus blueprint, emphasising sustainable construction practices with renewable energy options, limits on carbon footprints, and industry-leading power usage effectiveness.

“The campus will also include permeable landscaping and natural on-site drainage to protect precious resources,” Vantage said.

The company added it would invest in recycling, motion-sensor LED lighting and other elements for incremental energy and water savings throughout the campus, in addition to electric vehicle charging stations.

The campus will be cooled using a highly efficient, closed-loop chilled water system.

An integrated economiser capability will allow reduced compressor energy based on the outside ambient temperature so that when the weather is favourable, cooling becomes more sustainable and less resource-intensive.

In addition, the campus will also feature a dedicated on-site, high-voltage substation to meet its energy needs.

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New R15-billion data centre being built in Johannesburg