Africa Data Centres constructing its sixth facility in South Africa, to be ready by 2021

Africa Data Centres, the pan-African network of vendor- and carrier-neutral data centres, has begun construction of its modern facility in Johannesburg. The data centre will be located in Midrand and is scheduled for completion in 2021.

“The scale of this facility recognises the growing demand for reliable data centre capacity in Africa and in addition to helping speed up South Africa’s digital transformation, it will increase Africa Data Centres own capacity with an additional 10 megawatts,” says Xavier Matagne, Group Development Director at Africa Data Centres.

Africa Data Centres currently has five data centres at major regional hubs including Midrand, Town, Nairobi, Harare and Kigali. Matagne says the new facility will not only boost the South African economy by creating employment, but it will also enhance the local market through the addition of global skills.

“Our new facility will offer customers the flexibility they require from a co-location facility, irrespective of whether they are a small business needing a single low-density rack or one of the largest enterprises requiring multiple very high-density racks” he adds.

According to Matagne, the new facility is unique in the way that certain elements of the project will be built on-site, while others, most notably the critical plant rooms are prefabricated off-site and added at the appropriate phase of construction. ”These modules, which are essential to operations, will be built in factories abroad where they can be thoroughly tested before being shipped to South Africa and plugged into the building,” he says.

Matagne cites several reasons for this approach; “Firstly, to ensure the highest standards and quality, it is better to test these modules in a controlled environment as opposed to a construction environment. Secondly, given the time pressures that are natural for this type of project prefabricating them in this way, significantly reduced time to market.”

Another feature that sets this new facility apart is that it has been specifically designed to distribute power and cooling efficiently and cost-effectively to meet a wide range of customer demands and densities. ”Africa Data Centres fully understand the energy challenges South Africa is currently facing and as such, efficiency is a major focus at the Johannesburg data centre. We will be monitoring the facility 24/7/365 and continually looking for ways to reduce power consumption, through the design and operations.”

Over and above-being power efficient the facility has been designed to be fully scalable, he explains. ”From day one, it will possible to operate the data centre, even with a limited amount of electrical and mechanical equipment installed and we will incrementally increase the capacity of the site as the IT load starts to grow.”

“Our focus on the areas that matter – scalability, flexibility and energy efficiency. Africa Data Centres is perfectly positioned to supply world-class, cost-effective solutions to all its customers in the region. We see ourselves as a proudly African company and look forward to the new Johannesburg build playing a central role in accelerating digital innovation and transformation, as well as boosting the uptake of cloud services in South Africa, and the continent as a whole,” concludes Matagne.

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