An affiliate of Digital Realty has filed plans to build a 13-story data center in Downtown Los Angeles, adjacent to one of the company's existing sites and just a block from One Wilshire, the most connected building on the West Coast.
The project, which was first reported by Urbanize, will bring more data center capacity into Los Angeles, which is seeing strong demand for digital services to support the entertainment and gaming sector.
The site at 727 S. Grand is currently a parking deck, which will be demolished to make way for a 13-story, 485,892 square foot data center building, with about half of that space dedicated to technical space and the remainder for mechanical and electrical infrastructure and parking. The planning application was filed by GIP 7th Street, which lists a business address at a Digital Realty building in San Francisco.
The parking deck is across the street from the Digital Realty LAX10 data center at 600 W. 7th Street, and will provide adjacent capacity for the company's growing operations in Los Angeles. The company is pursuing a similar strategy in Chicago, where it plans to build a new data center next to Digital Realty's 350 Cermak carrier hotel, the primary connectivity hub in Downtown Chicago.
In Los Angeles, the center of data gravity is One Wilshire, a key hub for data traffic from Asia, with as much as a third of all trans-Pacific traffic passing through the building. It also serves as a key data storage and interconnection center for Los Angeles businesses, including the media and entertainment industry. The 727 S. Grand site is just a block from One Wilshire.
Building a ground-up "greenfield" project in the downtown of a major city can be challenging, but there is a recent example in Los Angeles in the CoreSite LA3 building, which was completed in 2020 as the city's first purpose-built data center. Other major data centers in the city have been retrofits - One Wilshire was initially an office tower, CoreSite LA2 was built in a former U.S. Post Office facility, and the Digital Realty LAX10 site was a department store.