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Forsythe to Build First “Retail Plus” Data Center Colocation Facility in Chicago Area

Forsythe Technology, an IT infrastructure integrator, today announced its plans to design and build a state-of-the-art, 221,000-square-foot data center facility in Elk Grove Village, Ill. This new data center addresses the needs of enterprises that have been looking for the best of both the retail and wholesale colocation data center markets. Forsythe is expected to break ground on the project in March. The facility will be ready for occupancy in early 2015.

Forsythe is developing this data center to help enterprises in need of higher-density, private data center suites with dedicated power and cooling infrastructure as well as customizable physical security and operational efficiency options. Forsythe is building this scalable, higher-density solution to help companies expand their data center capabilities without necessarily adding more data center floor space. The facility is being designed to comply with U.S. Green Building Council LEED certification standards for data centers and to obtain Tier III certification from the Uptime Institute, a certification currently held by approximately 60 data centers in the U.S. and 360 worldwide, few of which are colocation facilities.

Forsythe will also be moving its independent, multi-vendor Technology Evaluation Center, its Integration and Configuration Center and its Executive Briefing Center from the company’s Skokie, Illinois corporate headquarters to the new facility. This new integrated technology center will help Forsythe clients plan, procure, build, test, migrate, house, and manage their IT environments in one location.

Building on 42 years of IT experience and more than 10 years of data center engineering expertise, Forsythe is constructing the data center facility with fully private client suites. These suites offer the security and privacy companies typically find with 10,000+ square foot wholesale offerings, combined with the flexibility and modularity of retail cages. In addition, the private client suites have added benefits of hard-walls, scalable power densities, and operational efficiency options.

“After many years of listening to the needs of our clients and helping them build data centers and find colocation data center space, we made sure this data center facility has everything they have been asking us for,” said Forsythe vice president of data center development Steve Harris.

By offering each tenant the ability to fully control their suite cooling, uninterruptible power supply (UPS), physical security and operational efficiencies, the new structure will become a tenant’s “data center within a data center.” Tenants will be able to further configure their suites with the security and turn-key convenience found in wholesale data centers and the flexibility and modularity found in retail data centers. Electrical (2N UPS) and mechanical (N+1 precision air conditioning) control options will be combined to provide tenants with density choices ranging from 200 to 300 watts per square foot. With a denser environment, tenants will be able to optimize their IT configurations, thereby reducing their facility footprint and associated operational costs. Amenities include client workspaces and conference rooms. In addition, the data center’s modular suite design easily facilitates rapid expansion so tenants can expand their private data center suite as their business grows.

“Forsythe’s facility offers the flexibility and agility of the retail data center market, in terms of size and shorter contract length, with the privacy, control and density of large-scale, wholesale data centers,” said Albert Weiss, president of Forsythe Data Centers, Inc., the new subsidiary managing the center. He is also Forsythe Technology’s executive vice president and chief financial officer.

With this new offering, Forsythe is creating a new Retail+ category in the colocation data center market. See breakdown below.

The Gap in the Colocation Data Center Market










Cabinets and Cages

Private Suites

Rooms / Pods


Individual cabinets to 100 square foot cage increments

1,000 square foot increments 5,000 - 10,000 square foot increments
Contract Length Month-to-month to up to 3 years 5 years 10 years


(2) 30 amp circuits 200 – 300 W/sq. ft.

Client scalable

150 – 200 W/sq. ft.

Mechanical / Electrical Design



No client control


Full client control


Some individual control (possible)

The new subsidiary called Forsythe Data Centers, Inc. will be led by Albert Weiss and Steve Harris. They will oversee the design, construction, operations and management of the center.

The facility is being designed, engineered, powered and constructed with assistance of Environmental Systems Design, Inc., Duke Realty, Turner Construction, Emerson Network Power, Anixter and ComEd.

“Partnering with industry leaders like Forsythe is a great example of how we work to grow the region’s business base by offering tools needed to invest and expand in Northern Illinois,” said Sheila Owens, vice president of Economic and Business Development, ComEd.

For more information about Forsythe Data Centers, Inc., visit

About Forsythe

Founded in 1971, Forsythe helps over 1,000 U.S. and Canada-based companies with their data center needs. Clients come to Forsythe for help optimizing the cost, managing the risk and improving the performance of their IT. Forsythe provides professional services, financial solutions and IT products from all the leading IT infrastructure manufacturers and vendors. Forsythe’s experience crosses all facets of the data center including strategic sourcing, IT as a service, managed services, security and more. Forsythe is privately held and 100-percent employee-owned, with 1,000 employees in 50 locations. 2012 was Forsythe’s 42nd consecutive profitable year, with revenues of $1.17 billion. Forsythe McArthur Associates Inc., Forsythe Solutions Group Inc., Forsythe Technology Canada Inc., Forsythe International Inc., Mentora Group, SOS Security and Synnefo Technology Solutions are wholly-owned subsidiaries of Forsythe Technology Inc.

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