LCL invests €120 million (US$127.63m) in its data centres

LCL announces it will invest in sustainability & expansions over the next two years, contributing to a global mission to make data centres more sustainable

Data centre specialist LCL Data Centres will make €120 million (US$127.6m) available for infrastructure investments over the next two years. 

LCL will invest in expansions as well as in sustainability. More specifically, LCL will invest €100 million (US$106.3m) in two expansion projects in Aalst and Diegem, and €20 million (US$21.36m) in sustainability. 

The company will also install solar panels on the façade of LCL Brussels-North (Diegem). The aim of the investments is to enable LCL to become an even larger and sustainable Belgo-European data centre network. Thanks to these investments, LCL is aiming to be one of the companies at the forefront of the sector when it comes to sustainability.

Expanding to keep up with data demand

Given that internet users have increased by 60% globally, with internet traffic increasing by 440%, the workload of data centres has inevitably increased - which sees a real need to expand. WIth this in mind, companies within the sector worldwide are continually looking for new ways to expand in a sustainable way.

LCL will invest €100 million in the expansion of two of its data centres: LCL Brussels-West (in Aalst) and LCL Brussels-North (in Diegem). Given that both of these data centres have experienced an annual growth of 10%, LCL is expanding the sites in order to accommodate that growth.

Expansion work has already commenced in Aalst and is scheduled to be finished by March 2025, with more data rooms to be added to cover a total area of 2,367 m². In addition, work on expanding the data centre in Diegem will start in December 2023 and until October 2025.

Four floors will be added to the building (five floors in total), which will make it almost as large as the neighbouring PwC office. Construction work has already started on a mains connection for an additional 24 MW plus a 4,000 m² data room. 

“To maintain our leading position in the Belgian data centre sector, we need to continue to expand our existing data centres and equip them with sustainable innovations. This is essential if we are to host and serve as many customers as possible,” explains Laurens van Reijen, managing director of LCL Data Centres.

“The investments we will make represent a step forward for our company and for existing and future customers.”

The importance of sustainable growth

Concerning sustainability, LCL hopes to invest the available budget primarily in renewable energy and in measures aimed at improving its Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) and reducing its carbon footprint. 

Among other things, LCL will install solar panels on the façade of the Diegem site to generate renewable energy. LCL intends to reduce the PUE of all its data centres to 1.3 by 2030. Currently, only LCL’s Aalst location has a PUE that is less than 1.3 and the company will accomplish this by investing in more energy-efficient cooling installations, for example. 

LCL also intends to reduce its carbon emissions through the deployment of improved leak detectors in its cooling installations. It will use a renewable fuel, HVO100, for all its emergency generators and the continued electrification of its fleet, as well as other measures.

The company has frequently spoken on the importance of sustainability within the data centre sector. LCL confirmed this two years ago when it committed to two initiatives: the Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact (CNDCP) and in November 2021 it also joined the Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTi). 

Laurens van Reijen added: “These investments will enable us to work towards the sustainability goals we have set out in our ESG report, so that we can gradually become the leading player in the Belgian data centre world.”

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