ABN AMRO Bank On-Site Data Center

Purpose

ABN AMRO requested proposals for the design, development, and installation of multiple clean-power communication closet enclosures on each of the 29 floors within its new 540 W Madison high-rise technology center. A primary onsite Data Center also was required. Power protection, environmental controls, and voice and data needs for the complex were to be fully supported by the solution, including life safety and protection systems (e.g., fire alarms, smoke detectors).

Scope of Work

Technical

  • Assess space, power, and environmental needs against mechanical, electrical, and plumbing (MEP) plans and either work within or resolve identified architectural constraints
  • Design electrical systems, including distribution for UPS power protection, battery backup, highfrequency grounding, and electrical distribution to reliably and continuously deliver conditioned power to server racks and cabinets
  • Supervise distribution of low-voltage wiring and patching for each communication closet and equipment rack/enclosure
  • Design a custom “Glass House” cabinet for a limited number specialized installations Logistical

Logistical

  • Coordinate with building architects to obtain plans and specifications each floor
  • Coordinate manufacturing, quality control, and delivery of final solution between manufacturer and client location
  • Coordinate electrical and installation team access to each planned site
  • Serve on life safety design team to ensure accessibility and management of sensor-obtained data on fire alarm and protection systems
  • Procure telecom and enterprise server racks and cabinets with associated vertical wire management elements

Project Management

  • Manage needs assessment, solution design, vendor cooperation, quality control, documentation, and installation
  • Collaborate with architectural design teams to costeffectively address MEP issues wherever possible
  • Deploy and manage installation teams

Solution Overview

Data Center and communication closet designs used similar systems and equipment wherever possible to simplify installation and configuration.

In areas where specialized equipment required unique security and/or environmental conditions that could not be reliably maintained using standard infrastructure, Level-1 designed and procured a distributed technology solution consisting of an 84x36-inch glass enclosure with built-in power protection, environmental (temperature and humidity) sensors and controls, and physical security. A single cabinet enclosure was designed and developed for placement at strategic locations and at a main data center within the multi-floor complex to providing secure rack mounting of servers and other gear. Locks on both sides of the cabinet entry offered optimal security, while built-in perforations for cables allowed hard-wire connections as required. Level-1 designed the electrical systems to provide continuous conditioned power, including battery backup, highfrequency grounding, and electrical distribution, to enterprise server systems throughout the complex. To further ensure reliable, continuous operation of each site’s self-contained distributed technology center, each enclosure was equipped with sensors to capture and transmit data on temperature, humidity, power consumption, and security via Simple Network Monitoring Protocol (SNMP).

As part of the complex’s life safety design team, Level-1 addressed data routing and management for fire protection systems, pre-actions, FM-200 solutions, and code-required electrical emergency shutdown options.

Challenges and Solutions

On any project, timeliness and costs are two of the biggest concerns. Standardizing equipment and infrastructure for each communication closet and primary data center in the high-rise allowed Level-1 to obtain the volume discounts that help control costs and simplify installation across the building’s locations.