In its latest report, built asset consultancy BCS says that 88% of developers and investors surveyed expect to increase the amount of European technical data center area they own or are prepared to finance in the next 12 months.
The BCS Report, which brings together information from more than 3,000 senior professionals in Europe and the UK, said rising spending levels among construction sector respondents was revealing, with respondents generally reporting that the Last year was the most challenging for construction raw material sourcing, with concrete/cement, steel, lining materials and dry lining materials proving more difficult to source. as surplus stocks have run out and price inflation bites.
A significant proportion of respondents also reported difficulties in obtaining equipment components to equip their facilities. Once again, there has been a marked increase in issues in the last year, in all areas of the M&E functions, especially around generator, battery and distribution infrastructure, and air cooling equipment.
Chris Coward, head of project management at BCS, said the response “resonates with the challenges we face at BCS as we continue to project and manage major data center construction projects across the UK and Europe.”
He added: “The situation is unlikely to change in the short to medium term, and may even get worse, so any plans to defer or delay must be seen in that context. In the meantime, the industry has to navigate these challenges and find the best way to mitigate problems Our advice to our customers has been to push forward, bite the bullet.
“Of course, anyone operating in the construction industry is used to the need for planning ahead, but this has now been taken to a new level. For example, depending on the project and the associated cost constraints, we are working with customers to place orders for future phases of any development now, even if this is not planned for a while, by reserving factory spaces well in advance for key items.That way we can secure supply and price for the customer and the customer. provider can benefit from increased visibility.
Coupled with a shortage of building materials, difficulties in obtaining equipment kit components have led to price inflation across the board.
The BCS survey reported that more than double the number of respondents experienced price increases this year compared to last year. For security system components, the number increased almost fourfold, from around 9% to 36% this year.
BCS added that this month the price of key items such as transformers are being guaranteed for only 2 weeks (it used to be 4) and some material costs are increasing almost daily, putting additional pressure on companies to Sign off on costs and project milestones quickly or risk paying more and/or having to delay work.
Coward said: “In many cases delaying a project is not feasible and future data center demand levels show no signs of slowing. It may be better to acquire early and not just source but go out to the broader market.
“It’s also a good idea to consider using alternative products that may be more readily available, for example perhaps not using cladding. In some cases, it’s worth looking at existing installations, to see if they can be upgraded or refurbished.” to provide a short to medium solution. In fact, we’re seeing significant opportunities within older installations with critical system upgrades and SPOF removal.”