Data Center Gone Wild? Zillow Listing Captures Internet’s Imagination

July 28, 2021
House shoppers browsing Zillow seeking homes in the Dallas area are encountering an unusual opportunity: A former data center being offered for sale as the “ultimate safe house.”

Home shoppers browsing Zillow seeking homes in the Dallas area are encountering an unusual opportunity: A former data center being offered for sale as the “ultimate safe house.”

From the exterior, the 5,786-square-foot property on Southview Lane looks like a huge single-family home, complete with a fireplace and large windows. But as you enter the property, you encounter not a grand foyer or staircase, but a “man trap” corridor and security booth. There are no proper bedrooms and just one bathroom, but how about a backup generator and raised-floor technical space?

The Zillow listing appears to be a clever marketing ploy for a former data center property. It has succeeded, as the property was featured Wednesday on Zillow Gone Wild, the Facebook group that has exploded in popularity amid the COVID-19 pandemic, highlighting unusual property for homebound real estate surfers.

Although listed as a single-family home, the building appears to be a small purpose-built data center for AT&T that was designed to blend into its surroundings in a residential neighborhood just north of Interstate 635 in North Dallas.

“A property unlike any other!” declares the listing. “With walls, flooring, and ceiling made of concrete, this property can serve as the perfect storage spot for large wine collections, art collections, multiple cars, as well as serving as the ultimate safe house.

“The building is connected to two electrical grids and also features a natural gas generator that has is powered by two diesel fuel tanks in the event of a natural gas failure, making the chance of power loss a very rare.” it continues. “With office space as well as warehouse space and large outdoor area, there are many ways this property can be utilized.”

The audience of more than 500,000 followers at Zillow Gone Wild, which featured unusual and outlandish listings, was largely unfamiliar with data centers and not sure what to make of the listing. But sport was had in the comments. Some excerpts:

  • “Love the open floor plan.”
  • “Someone took ‘work from home’ a bit too far.”
  • “Being this is in Texas, it’s pretty nice that you can get reliable power!”

Here’s a look at the unusual property via Google Street Maps.

We’ve reached out to the real estate agent for more info about the property’s history. To see the full range of photos, check out the listing on Zillow and Compass Real Estate and the commentary on Zillow Gone Wild.

About the Author

Rich Miller

I write about the places where the Internet lives, telling the story of data centers and the people who build them. I founded Data Center Knowledge, the data center industry's leading news site. Now I'm exploring the future of cloud computing at Data Center Frontier.

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