Is A Metal Building Better For Data Centers?

Posted by Ben Sparhawk on Sep 1, 2021 3:27:50 PM

After COVID hit, most of the developed world started working, doing school, and socializing online.

This created a massive surge in demand for data center capacity.

Although the pandemic increased the need for data center expansion, it made it much harder for the industry to grow by disrupting the construction supply chain. It has also adjusted the trends in the metal building industry.

However, after that initial slowdown, data center construction is booming once again.

As organizations try to determine how to move into the future with data center construction, one of the most crucial factors to consider is which building material should be used for new data center environments.

Like most commercial and industrial buildings, concrete once dominated the landscape.

However, the storage needs of today are changing rapidly.

The restrictive and inflexible nature of concrete construction may no longer be ideal for data centers.

So, what is quickly taking the place of concrete? Steel.

In the article below, we will discuss why metal buildings are ideal for data centers.

Table of Contents


What Is A Data Center?

A data center is a facility made up of networked computers and server cabinets that businesses use to organize, process, store, and disseminate significant amounts of data.

Businesses rely heavily on the applications, services, and data contained within a data center, making it an absolutely critical asset for their everyday operations.

A data center warehouse isn't just one thing, but they are comprised of multiple elements.

At the bare minimum, data centers are the principal repositories for all IT equipment, including servers, storage subsystems, networking switches, routers, and firewalls, along with many other pieces of data center equipment.

Data centers have to contain an adequate infrastructure, like power distribution and supplemental power subsystems.

This can also include electrical switching, constant power supplies, backup generators, ventilation, and data center cooling systems, such as computer room air conditioners.

This requires a physical facility with physical security like badge access and sufficient square footage and design flexibility to house the entire collection of infrastructure and equipment.


Why Should You Build Your Data Center With A Pre-Engineered Metal Building Kit?

There are many reasons steel stands to overtake concrete as the building material of choice for data centers.

For starters, steel buildings have less of an environmental impact than concrete structures.

Steel is the most recycled building material on the planet and can be reused repeatedly without a drop-off in quality.

This also reduces the amount of waste produced and the need to manufacture raw materials.

Steel data center architecture also lasts longer than concrete because it won't wear, shrink, or crack, further cutting down on pollutants and waste disposal.

Overall, steel has a much smaller ecological footprint than concrete construction.

Secondly, if your data center can't scale to meet demand, you will be at a severe disadvantage.

When you build with traditional building materials, you are typically locked into your current capacity, or you have to build with the future in mind and cover the cost of the unused space until you need it.

Pre-engineered metal buildings are flexible so they can be reconfigured and expanded as capacity needs change.

Steel structures are constructed to the owner's specified dimensions to start with but can be customized and expanded in the future.

Steel buildings are also lighter and much easier to transport.

With a metal building, you won't need heavy machinery to move and install it. The majority of the construction is done on-site at a factory.

This significantly reduces the staffing needed to get your data center up and running.

A few other benefits of metal data centers are:  

  • Clearspan designs that allow more room for more servers and components
  • Easy-to-add climate control and insulation
  • Excellent weather and fire-resistant properties
  • Potential to include roof-mounted solar panels
  • Virtually maintenance-free
  • Critical security features
  • No interior finishing required

Structural steel is ideal for creating strong, secure data centers thanks to its long-span capabilities, speedy construction, versatility, and resilience.


Build Your Data Center With CDMG

If you are looking at data center designs and deciding what building material to use, steel is your best bet.

Steel allows you to keep your options open to increase capacity and scale as needed in the future.

It also has less of an environmental impact and a faster construction time.

As one of the nation's top metal builders, CDMG has the experience and knowledge to design your perfect metal data center.  

Regardless of your needs when it comes to your data center, you can expect a high-quality building with American-made steel and a dedicated project manager when you partner with CDMG.

CDMG is flexible for your needs. We can provide supplies, design, or full construction services for your project.

To get a personalized quote for a prefab metal data center, click on the link below.  


Check out our other pre-engineered metal building kit articles:

Benefits of A Pre-Engineered Metal Building For A Manufacturing Facility

How Much Maintenance Is Required For A Metal Building?

Should You Use The Same Metal Building Manufacturer To Supply and Erect Your Building?


Topics: Metal Data Center

About The Author

ben-sparhawkI'm Ben Sparhawk, the Content Writer and Marketing Account Manager for CDMG. I write to showcase the work that CDMG does and everything related to the pre-engineered metal building industry as well as their engineering capabilities. When I'm not working on content, you can find me spending time with my wife and children. You can also find me in the gym, trying to better myself, and I also enjoy spending time outdoors hiking or checking out local parks.