Skybox Datacenters Moves to Katy

A rendering of Skybox Datacenters’ new Katy facility.

A rendering of Skybox Datacenters’ new Katy facility.

Data center developer Skybox Datacenters has great expectations for its new Houston One facility currently under construction at Franz and Mason Road in Katy. The company, which aims to meet growing data center needs of the area’s energy, health care and high-performance computing industries, expects construction to wrap up by November.

Skybox Managing Partner Rob Morris spoke at the recent Katy Area Economic Development Council (EDC) General Assembly meeting where he reviewed the detailed plans for the new campus. “Companies in Houston are changing the way they look at their data center portfolio,” said Morris. “Data center users in the Houston market are highly sophisticated and want a robust infrastructure to protect their data from the elements.”

Skybox executives have noted rapidly growing business opportunities with the emergence of “big data” in the energy industry, which uses 3D seismic imaging to identify promising oil and gas products. Skybox’s arrival reflects a welcome trend for the area’s business community.

“This is the second data center to locate in the Katy area in recent years,” said Lance LaCour, president of the Katy Area Economic Development Council. “Data centers are one of our target industries for recruitment and usually represent a significant revenue source to local governments, due to their high capital investment. This phase of the Skybox project should create over $70 million in capital investment.”

The 86,960 square-foot facility will initially offer four private 10,000 square-foot data halls with the capacity to expand to 12 data halls within its 12 acre campus. The new building also will have 12.5 megawatts of critical load and will be powered by a loop-fed, 300 megawatt electric utility substation immediately adjacent to the site.

“Skybox wanted to be positioned near the Energy Corridor and have access to a dependable power supply and multiple, redundant telecom fiber providers,” LaCour said. “The Katy Area EDC worked on this project for about eight months and provided real estate due diligence assistance, utility solutions assistance and permitting assistance.

“The EDC has offered to assist the company with assessing employee recruitment/training incentives and energy efficiency incentives,” LaCour added. “We welcomed the opportunity to help Skybox locate in Katy because there is a huge customer base awaiting their services. Skybox will be able to regularly interact with more than 500 energy-related businesses employing more than 20,000 people.”

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