GM has a new $130 million datacenter

Summary:It will be "the computing backbone" for the automaker's global operations as it shrinks its 23-facility footprint to just two.

Photo courtesy GM

This morning, a rather giddy General Motors officially unveiled its new state-of-the-art, $130-million enterprise datacenter.

The facility, located at the automaker's Technical Center in the Detroit, Michigan suburb of Warren, will "serve as the computing backbone" for the automaker's global operations and is the first of two so-called "Information Technology Operations and Command" centers that it will build.

As you might expect for such a mammoth facility—93,400 square feet in total; the command center itself is 5,040 square feet, with 48 work stations and a 955-sq. ft. video wall—the datacenter is intended to consolidate IT infrastructure that is spread across multiple sites. It will handle compute related to GM's product development, manufacturing, marketing, sales and OnStar applications; actual functions could range from crash test simulations to payments to suppliers in the supply chain to sales forecasting.

Oh, and the company's own private cloud.

GM's ultimate goal is to shrink its global IT footprint from 23 facilities today to two by 2015. The second, $100 million facility will be built in nearby Milford (a 45-minute drive from Warren) later this year.

"Having a single nerve center for our global operations will get newer vehicle designs and technologies into our customers' hands quicker and improve the bottom line," GM chairman and CEO Dan Akerson said in prepared remarks. "IT is back home where it should be."

Editor's note: The original version of this post indicated that the datacenter was 5,040 square feet; that is incorrect. The datacenter is 93,400 square feet and the Command Center is 5,040 square feet. We regret the error.

Topics: Data Centers, Hardware


Andrew Nusca is a former writer-editor for ZDNet and contributor to CNET. He is also the former editor of SmartPlanet, ZDNet's sister site about innovation. He writes about business, technology and design now but used to cover finance, fashion and culture. He was an intern at Money, Men's Vogue, Popular Mechanics and the New York Daily Ne... Full Bio

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