Germany recently joined the ranks of the green elite with the completion of Citigroup’s stunning new Data Center in Frankfurt. Designed by leading sustainable architecture and engineering firm Arup Associates, the 230,000-square-foot facility’s efficient use of energy and resource-conserving design have made it the first data center in the world to achieve LEED Platinum! That’s no small task considering the energy required to keep stacks of servers running smoothly in a climate-controlled environment.
Citigroup’s new data center outwardly showcases its green credentials throught the extensive use of recycled and locally sourced materials and alternating green facades – a green wall on one side of the complex and a fenestrated window panel on the other. Whereas the green wall serves to insulate the building’s interior, the fenestrated window offers daylighting while providing the opportunity for natural ventilation. The facility is topped off by a vegetated green roof that actively keeps the building cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter while absorbing rainwater. Plant topology was carefully selected to enhance the operational energy efficiency of the building.
While the building’s envelope aesthetically projects sustainable design practices, the most radical green innovations occur on the inside. Citi Data Center will use only 30 percent of the power required for services that a typical data center would utilize, and only requires 40 percent of the heating energy. Additionally, through the use of innovative reverse osmosis water treatment for cooling, the building will save 50 million liters of water per year.
Photos by Christian Richters