Markham, ON welcomed the latest addition to the city’s high-tech hub recently. CenturyLink Technology Solutions opened its TR3 data centre in Markham. The facility offers over 100,000 square feet of interior space. CenturyLink executives expressed optimism that the new data centre will satisfy customer demand as well as allow the company to expand in the Canadian market.
At the opening ceremony, CenturyLink executives shared their confidence in the company’s decision to grow in the True North. “We’re pleased to make this investment,” Jeff Von Deylen, president, CenturyLink, said. “This is our fourth Canadian data centre, and our most significant investment. Canada is a big part of our strategy.”
TR3 is CenturyLink’s second data centre in the greater Toronto area. Its first data centre is in Mississauga. During his address, Von Deylen discussed why the GTA was an attractive destination for CenturyLink. “Toronto is a leading centre of business,” he remarked. “That’s in line with what we want.”
The data centre is in the first phase of its development. Currently, there are two rooms. The facility operates at two megawatts, but will be going up to five as the data centre scales up. CenturyLink data centre designers believe their plug-and-play design will make the expansion easier and faster. While the facility design is based on the company’s American data centres, facility employees noted that it has been tweaked to withstand Canadian weather conditions.
CenturyLink hopes that TR3 will offer reliability and scalability. It features network connectivity and carrier diversity, state of the art security and a 100 percent SLA with temperature and humidity SLAs managed to ASHRAE standards. In addition, customers will be able to choose from colocation, cloud, managed hosting, managed security and managed network solutions. Most importantly, the data centre has earned a Tier III certification from the UpTime Institute.
“This is our commitment to this region,” Von Deylen stated in his opening remarks. Markham mayor Frank Scarpitti told the audience that CenturyLink has found itself an enthusiastic partner in his city. “We’re proud to welcome CenturyLink to Markham,” he declared. “CenturyLink made a great choice coming to Markham. The GTA has infrastructure and communities. We’ve done our part for businesses.” Scarpitti pointed out the data centre’s advantages for Markham. “This is the largest CenturyLink facility in the country,” he remarked. “It’s made Markham and the GTA more competitive.”
Scarpitti also commented that TR3 represents the great technological changes that have taken place in the past few decades. “Having your head in the cloud used to have a negative connotation,” he said. “Now, people are asked whether their business is in the cloud, and if so, why not?” Tony Olvet, group VP, research domains team, IDC, also examined the issue of technological advancements in recent years. “As we share the experience of this data centre opening, we’re reminded of how far technology has come,” he acknowledged. “The hum and blinking lights are a representation of innovation.”
Olvet added that data centres power what IDC calls the “third platform”: mobile devices and applications used for intelligent industry solutions. These include mobile broadband, Big Data and analytics, social business and cloud services. IDC predicts the third platform will play a prominent role in businesses in the future. “Technology is going to be part of your business, no matter what your business is,” Olvet asserted. “We expect more organizations to take advantage of the third platform and the Internet of Things.” CenturyLink hopes that GTA businesses turn to TR3 to do so.