STACK INFRASTRUCTURE is proud to go international with expansion of its hyperscale footprint to Toronto, Canada 

Brian Cox, Chief Executive Officer of STACK INFRASTRUCTURE

When the first phase STACK INFRASTRUCTURE’s soon-to-be 48MW data center facility opens next year in Toronto, it’ll mark the beginning of a new era in the region. Not just for our company, but for the millions of residents and thousands of businesses that call the area home as well.

North America’s fourth largest municipality and seventh-largest metro area is home to nearly 7 million people, the world’s seventh largest stock exchange, and the country’s five largest banks. As Canada’s financial and industrial epicenter, Toronto seems like it’d be a hotspot for data center activity. Yet, there remains very little capacity for hyperscale cloud providers, enterprises, and content providers to expand their footprint here — which is precisely why we’ve chosen to do so. 

Why has Toronto lagged behind in digital infrastructure?

Historically, most of Toronto’s public cloud availability zone options were Montreal, in neighboring Quebec, or from American cities like Chicago and New York. 

But over the years, as everything from gaming and online trading to streaming video and advanced telecommunications grew in popularity and power, Toronto’s demand for high-security, high-performance, low-latency solutions within reasonable proximity of major interconnection hubs has grown steadily, while access to available infrastructure hasn’t kept pace.

Data sovereignty has also become a more prominent concern, as the US Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act and the Patriot Act have made it possible for the US Government to subpoena foreign intelligence or data without probable cause. This means that Canadian data is subject to US oversight and presents a strong use case for storing that data on Canadian soil when possible.

As a result, companies of all stripes — and their end users — have begun clamoring to bring the underlying digital infrastructure that powers their preferred business or private use technologies closer to home in an effort to reduce operating costs while dramatically improving overall network performance via lower latency connections

Why Toronto? Why now?

As Canada’s financial hub — home to the Toronto Stock Exchange, a large number of financial services, law, and professional services firms — the region is and will continue to be a vital market for businesses of all types and sizes. Like other major cities with broad capital markets, Toronto’s demand for high-security, high-performance, low-latency solutions within reasonable proximity of 151 Front Street will continue to be the primary driver of data center demand in the area.

However, with the province’s workforce (and population at large) becoming increasingly dispersed and isolated due to technology evolution, existing trends toward remote work, and the lasting impact of the COVID pandemic, the cloud infrastructure and network density in the area required to serve the region needs to grow exponentially.

The city’s data center needs have traditionally been served by retail data centers, but increasing cloud and IT service demand to enable digital transformation initiatives for the city’s 37 Fortune 500 companies means moving some workloads to the cloud at greater scale than retail operators can deliver, according to 451 Research’s latest research on the Toronto market. Add that to the massive spike in internet traffic from lockdowns and quarantine, and the demand on existing infrastructure will push it to the brink. 

The opportunity to supply the market with appropriately powered and scaled infrastructure, public cloud onramps, data protection, and connectivity for its immediate needs is an attractive business proposition for a hyperscale developer like STACK. And the region’s projected population growth, among the fastest in the region and the country, translates to significant and sustainable revenue growth opportunities for years to come. 

At the same time, the region’s geographic location is also advantageous. Because of the area’s more temperate climate, cooling large scale deployments should lead to overall lower energy consumption. And because electricity costs are quite often lower than other data center hubs because of the province’s adoption of renewable or sustainable energy sources, STACK and its data center customers can both benefit from lower operating expenses. Combined with Ontario’s lower tax rate than neighboring Quebec, and the economic benefit of locating in the region becomes even more apparent.

Growth where it matters most

With a history of delivering locally scaled digital infrastructure solutions in critical markets like Northern Virgina and Silicon Valley, STACK INFRASTRUCTURE is uniquely qualified to capitalize on the massive upside of the Toronto market. 

In particular, the absence of hyperscale facilities in the area fulfills a need to deliver a brand new cloud availability zone in a congested but underserved market. It’s an ideal scenario for creating a new path to growth that can help clouds, content providers and other large, data-driven enterprises differentiate from competitors with locally-delivered low latency connectivity and rapid scalability.

Our uniquely positioned campus is already connected to the city’s available fiber network and is just 10km from Toronto’s primary interconnection hub, 151 Front Street. It features immediately avaible capacity up to 8MW and further build to suit campus capacity at an exceedingly swift delivery timeline. 

With easy access to three power substations for redundant power and a selection of fiber partners, the campus is primed to enable sustainable and rapid scale for years to come, delivering up to 56MW of customizable, build-to-suit capacity delivered with speed that other data center developers cannot match. 

With our new facility, named TOR01A, not only does Toronto gain a localized, low latency, high capacity, secure, digital infrastructure, but in combination with upcoming, low-latency, direct fiber route projects between Toronto and Montreal, for the first time Montreal and Ottawa will have access to a diverse regional availability zone.

Toronto is poised to become a major wholesale data center market befitting a metro area of its size and importance. And much like STACK’s previous experiences in emerging markets like Silicon Valley, Chicago, Portland, and Northern Virginia, in which we started with one location and rapidly expanded to multiple sites and hundreds of megawatts of capacity, our vision is to catalyze that growth with immediately available digital infrastructure and methodically, reliably, and sustainably scale it over time to multiple campuses and many facilities. 

Download our Toronto campus data sheet for more information about scalable digital infrastructure in what is becoming Canada’s fastest-growing cloud region.