DataBank to Develop 120 MW Atlanta Facility
The first of the two planned buildings will come online by 2026.
DataBank is expanding its presence in Atlanta with a new, 120-megawatt data center. The developer has acquired 95 acres of land in Lithia Springs, Ga., where it will build a 1 million-square-foot facility. The first of the two planned buildings is expected to come online by 2026, DataBank CEO Raul Martynek confirmed for Commercial Property Executive.
Slated to also include a 180-megawatt substation from Georgia Power, this new data center will be the company’s fifth and largest in the Atlanta market. DataBank cited increased demand for AI/ML applications as the reason for this expansion.
DataBank will construct ATL5 to meet demand for new hyperscale cloud and other enterprise clients. The company will leverage its Universal Data Hall Design, which involves first and foremost accommodating these high-performance computing needs. Key features of this design include a layered building approach that allows for flexibility in terms of infrastructure, capacity for high density deployments, as well as different cooling methods for each data hall, depending on client demands.
“Considering AI/ML workloads require significantly more power and cooling than traditional workloads, many existing data centers may need to be reconfigured. In fact, HPC workloads consume as much as 10 times the power than conventional ones. With more power needs, come greater cooling needs as well. Thus, HPC-ready data centers have a more demanding infrastructure requirement,” Martynek told CPE. “There are not remotely enough data centers with such capabilities currently, so many more will need to be built to meet such demand,” he added.
Plentiful land and power contribute to Atlanta’s booming market
DataBank has been active in the Atlanta market since 2018, when it developed ATL1 in partnership with Georgia Tech. Since then, it has expanded by acquiring two data centers in 2021. The firm also owns another 18 acres of land in Lithia Springs, where it is building the ATL4 facility, which has been fully pre-leased.
DataBank currently operates just under 300,000 square feet of data center space in the market, providing 55.1 megawatts of critical load across its existing facilities.
According to Martynek, Atlanta has plentiful land and a friendly business climate, enabling the growth of the data center sector in the region. Other advantages include the availability of long-haul fiber and good overall connectivity. “Atlanta has some of the lowest utility rates in the country for a major metropolitan area,” Martynek mentioned.
Several other companies have recently made commitments to the Atlanta market. DC BLOX broke ground on a $1.2 billion data center, also in Lithia Springs, while Microsoft acquired 350 acres for a $1 billion campus in Rome, Ga.
As of June, Atlanta had 235.6 megawatts under construction, a recent CBRE report shows. The market’s 7.4 percent vacancy rate indicates a healthy amount of absorption, with most of the new development preleased to hyperscalers. Taking into consideration planned facilities as well, the pipeline amounted to more than 2 gigawatts, according to the same source.