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Stack, First Gulf complete Phase 1 of 56MW Toronto data centre

Eight-megawatt facility part of development partnership at Danforth Ave. property

IMAGE: Stack's Toronto data centre
A rendering of the STACK data centre at 3950 Danforth Ave. in Toronto. (Courtesy STACK Infrastructure Inc.)

STACK Infrastructure Inc. has completed the first phase of its 56-megawatt flagship Toronto campus.

The initial development at the 20-acre campus features an eight-megawatt data centre with 48 megawatts of planned expansion capacity.

The campus is located at 3950 Danforth Ave. on a site formerly owned and occupied for decades by pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly.

“In a market that continues to see a high absorption rate for data centre capacity, STACK is proud to deliver the first phase of our Toronto campus,” Brian Cox, STACK Americas CEO, said in a statement. “We look forward to deploying the next phase of this flagship campus to address our clients’ needs while vitalizing the local economy.”

STACK, headquartered in Denver, now has 2.5 gigawatts built or under development, and over four gigawatts of expansion and potential capacity.

About half of the current 8MW capacity in Toronto remains available, a company spokesperson told RENX.

"STACK is open to exploring requests from clients interested in securing highly scalable capacity options at its 56MW Toronto flagship campus," the spokesperson wrote in an email reply to questions from RENX. "Among the options of build-to-suit, powered shell, and commissioned capacity, 4MW of powered shell are immediately available with an additional 48MW available in the future phases."

STACK’s Toronto campus

STACK partnered with Toronto-based developer First Gulf Corporation to deliver the first phase via the renovation of an existing building.

First Gulf has developed over $5 billion worth of office, industrial, mixed-use and retail properties since its founding in 1987.

The developer had acquired the Danforth property in December 2020 for $24.6 million, according to data from Avison Young. STACK came onboard as the tenant when the companies were introduced via a broker.

“Toronto, with its incredible economic growth, access to power and connectivity, is one of North America’s most exciting data centre expansion opportunities,” Cox said in a media release from the campus’ May 2021 announcement.

The next 24-megawatt phase of development, with planned delivery in Q2 2026, will use 100 per cent renewable energy. The STACK spokesperson told RENX site preparation work is underway for the expansion.

A release notes the campus is six miles from 151 Front Street, Toronto’s largest carrier hotel and the primary internet exchange point in the city. That property was recently sold by Allied Properties REIT to KDDI Corp. of Japan as part of a $1.35 billion data centre portfolio transaction which closed in August.

It also has facilities in Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas–Forth Worth, New Albany, Northern Virginia, Phoenix, Portland, the Silicon Valley and in Calgary. It is considering additional expansion in Canada.

"STACK is exploring additional key locations in Canada while its initial focus is on Toronto, due to its offerings as a top commercial, financial, and industrial hub and central location with contracted access to power and robust connectivity," the spokesperson wrote. "Home to the Toronto Stock Exchange, this market continues to see a high absorption rate for data centre capacity, and STACK’s campus provides right-sized capacity for cloud service providers." 

The company is also building an 84-megawatt campus in Frankfurt, a 72-megawatt campus in Osaka and a 72-megawatt campus in Melbourne.

According to a March report from Arizton, the Canadian data centre market will experience a compound annual growth rate of 8.70 per cent from 2022 to 2028, reaching approximately $7.38 billion in investments by that time.

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