For Rent: Data Center

Travelport GDS CEO Gordon Wilson in October told The Beat about plans to market data center backup and recovery services in its Denver-area facility to other travel industry companies. Travelport had just moved its Apollo and United Airlines reservation system from there to Atlanta. According to a Monday press statement, Travelport has engaged Transwestern and Wired Real Estate Group to help sell data center services to "prospective tenants who require 1,000 square feet or more of net data center space ... at [Travelport's] high-density, carrier neutral data center in Greenwood Village, Colo." A Travelport/Transwestern Web site described the "carrier-neutral facility" as having a "10-year track record of zero downtime." Zero? Okay it probably rounds to zero, but technical issues in Apollo like one experienced in 2007 have downed certain United Airlines systems, temporarily lengthening passenger lines, delaying flights and prompting manual and backup procedures. Still, the downtime is negligible despite huge transaction loads. Reliability is what mainframes and legacy systems are best at. Then again, you can find blogs saying the opposite by self-described mainframe veterans, so what do I know? Here's more from the Monday message with some context on Apollo's ghost in Denver:

"The site was originally commissioned in 1972 in order to meet the mission-critical needs of the airline industry. In total, the site encompasses two independent data centers for a total of 267,000 gross square feet with 100,000 square feet of ready to move-in space. Travelport has continuously invested in the property, including numerous upgrades in 1998, to ensure resiliency and operational efficiency. These measures have returned dividends, with the facility delivering exceptional efficiency (PUE = 1.50) and is among the highest level of availability in the nation. Other much sought after features delivered by Travelport include high-power density (150 watts/ft critical load), pass-through power, and carrier neutrality, with AT&T, Verizon, L3, and Qwest among qualified service providers.

"Industry analysts project growth in demand of data center real estate at 15 percent annually, while delivery of data center capacity has lagged materially at only 5 percent per year. With financing difficult to obtain, this imbalance is expected to worsen, accentuating Travelport's market opportunity."

Is there a market, anyone?