Google has kicked off the construction of its first Asian data center in Hong Kong which is expected be up and running in early-2013.
In a statement released Thursday, the Internet giant said it will be investing US$300 million--which includes the cost of land, construction and technical equipment--to build the facility in Kowloon, Hong Kong, on a 2.7 hectare site. Once completed, users in Asia can expect "faster and more reliable" access to Google's online tools and services, said Simon Chang, Google's head of Asia-Pacific hardware operations.
Even with Hong Kong's warm weather, Chang said the "innovative design" of the facility will make it one of the most efficient and environmentally friendly in Asia. "One way we'll achieve region-leading efficiency [in Hong Kong] is by custom designing each element to operate at optimal efficiency," he said.
Beside custom designs, he noted that the Hong Kong facility will make use of efforts used across its global data center network to increase efficiency. These include, for example, maximizing the use of free cooling instead of chillers, running equipment at a much hotter temperature than typical data center, and measuing and adjusting power usage to achieve peak efficiency, said the Google executive.
Once fully operational, the Hong Kong data center will hire about 25 full-time staff and a number of part- and full-time contractors for various roles such as computer technicians, electrical and mechanical engineers, and catering and security staff.
Hong Kong will not be the only Asian data center for Google. In September, the Internet giant announced it had purchased 2.45 hectares of land in Singapore to build a data center, although it was unable to confirm when construction for the site would begin.