With more than seven million people squeezed in to around 1,100sq km of land space—and property prices regularly ranking among the highest in the world—Hong Kong realizes it needs to get inventive if the city wants to attract more big IT business. The answer: cavernous underground data centers that remain naturally cool.
Plans are already in motion to start digging deep according to Cordells property law firm partner Hilary Cordells, reports The Register.
"Rock cavern development can be done, and datacentre use is a particularly good one," she said at the Datacentre Space Asia Conference this week. "It's on the government's radar screen and it's taking active steps but it's not easy and some sites will be more suitable than others."
According to a feasibility study by the special administrative region's (SAR) Civil Engineering and Development Department and engineering firm Arup, two-thirds of the land space in the region have a "high to medium suitability" for cave-digging. Five regions more than 20 hectares (over 49 acres) large have been homed in on as ideal starting points. Arup's report went on to say 400 government facilities have already been identified as possessing the "potential for rock cavern development," so it might not just be data centers taking the journey down under. In fact, the report suggests a whole raft of potential other uses, including cave research labs, rail maintenance depots, or even crematoriums. For scientific research or secret government projects, cave bases make sense given their indiscreet and secure nature. (Just ask Bruce Wayne.)
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