The list below identifies underground data centers located around the globe that are designed to serve multiple tenants (co-location) versus solely one business or organization. Given the wide ranging of threats to data resources from climate change, cyber attacks, malware, rising seas, terrorism, ransomware, weather, and war; governments, businesses, financial institutions, and other organizations need to have safe and secure places to retain primary and/or backup data for their operations.
Properly designed and situated, subterranean data centers offer a number of benefits compared to surface facilities particularly when it comes to climate, weather, terrorism, and war. If fact, the adaptive reuse of military-grade bunkers and abandoned mines have proven to be successful in many instances. Of the list provided below, eight (8) were originally bunkers. Furthermore, another nine (9) are located in former mines.
As can be seen from the list, the western half of Missouri and nearby parts of Kansas lead the way in the United States for locating underground data centers with seven (7) such facilities. Former underground limestone mines seem to be particularly well suited for data centers.
As always, any additions, suggestions, or corrections are most welcome. In the case of several underground data centers not included in the list below, information is unclear whether they were actually built or if they remain in operation. These include the Strataspace and Olive Mountain data centers in Kentucky and Dataville in Nova Scotia.
Guizhou, China – Gui’an Seven Star Data Centre (2020) = 323,000 square feet
Pori, Finland – The Rock Data Centre (2014) = 91,500 square feet
Paris, France – Scaleway Data Centre = 21,500 square feet/85′ below ground
Afula, Israel – under development
Jerusalem, Israel – Oracle Data Centre (2021) = 460,000 square feet/164′ below ground
Petah Tikva, Israel – GTR Data Centre (2023) = 51,700 square feet
Iglesias, Sardinia, Italy – Digital Metalla Data Centre = under development
Amman, Jordan – The Bunker (2019) = 46,300 square feet/ 50′ below ground
Riga, Latvia – DEAC Grizinkalns Data Centre (2018) = 4,300 square feet/40′ below ground
Luxembourg City, Luxembourg – European Data Hub = 59,200 square feet/65′ under ground
Maloy, Norway – Lefdal Mine Data Centre (2016) = 1,290,000 square feet/75′ below ground
Stavanger, Norway – Green Mountain Data Centre DC-1 = 242,000 square feet
Stockholm, Sweden – Bahnhof Pionen Data Centre (2008) = 10,800 square feet/100′ below ground
Lucerne, Switzerland – Datarock = 50′ below ground
Lucerne, Switzerland – EWL Data Centre (2020) = 18,300 square feet
Saanen-Gstaad, Switzerland – Mount 10 (Swiss Fort Knox I and II) = ?
Zurich, Switzerland – GIB Data Centre -8142 = ?
Lincoln, England, UK – SmartBunker Data Centre (2000) = 30,000 square feet
London (Sandwich), England, UK – The Bunker 2/Sandwich Data Centre (2004) = 130,000 square feet – (former air radar station)
London (Thatcham), England, UK – The Bunker 1/Newbury Data Centre (1994) = ?
Branson, Missouri – The Mountain Data Center (2007) = 300,000 square feet/165′ below ground
Des Moines, Iowa – The InfoBunker (2006) – 65,000 square feet/six to 50′ below ground
Houston, Texas – The Bunker = 40,000 square feet
Kansas City, Missouri – Iron Mountain Data Center = 50,000 square feet and 110′ below ground
Kansas City, Missouri – SubTropolis/LightEdge Data Center = 60,000 square feet
Kansas City, Missouri – SubTropolis/SubTech Data Center = 40,000 square feet
Kansas City, Missouri – SubTropolis Data Center = 400,000 square feet
Kansas City (Lenexa, KS), Missouri – Cavern Technologies Data Center (2007) = 3,000,000 square feet/125′ below ground
Pittsburgh (Boyers), Pennsylvania – Iron Mountain WPA-1 Data Center = 130,000 square feet/220′ below ground
Springfield, Missouri – Bluebird Underground Data Center = 76,000 square feet/85′ below ground