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Old Posted May 17, 2007, 7:51 AM
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sirkingwilliam sirkingwilliam is online now
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Westover Hills Lands Another Data Center

Hospital chain plans Westover Hills data center

Web Posted: 05/16/2007 10:49 PM CDT


L.A. Lorek
Express-News Business Writer

Another data center is coming to San Antonio.

Christus Health bought 10 acres in Westover Hills and plans to build a $21 million, 43,000-square-foot data center, which will have 50 employees. It also plans to expand the data center in 25,000-square-foot increments as necessary in the coming years.

"We did evaluate other locations in Texas, but we felt one of the things San Antonio offered to us was an increasingly high-tech-friendly environment," said George Conklin, Christus Health's senior vice president and chief information officer, based in Houston.

Microsoft Corp.'s decision to put a $550 million data center in Westover Hills also influenced Christus, Conklin said.

Christus is the fourth new data center this year to announce it will come to San Antonio. A few weeks ago, the National Security Agency announced plans to put a data center in the former Sony Corp. microchip plant at Military Drive and Loop 410.

Christus Health, a Catholic-based health-care system based in the Dallas area, may have another company build its data center and lease it back, Conklin said. Christus runs more than 40 hospitals in seven states, including nonprofit Christus Santa Rosa Health Care Corp. in San Antonio.

Christus already is building a $130 million, 150-bed hospital in the Westover Hills area. That project is starting with a 60,000-square-foot medical office building, which should open this summer. The hospital, which is scheduled to open in December 2008, will create an initial 350 jobs.

The data center is a separate project.

It will house confidential patient and hospital records and company information in a large building containing computer servers. The hospital system needs more storage space, Conklin said, since its existing sites in San Antonio and Houston are almost full. Christus already has 80 employees at its data center here. They will move to the Westover Hills site once it is complete.

Mario Hernandez, president of the San Antonio Economic Development Foundation, expects that at least two other local companies will announce similar projects this year.

"They are close to the market, and they understand the key location factors of data centers are met by San Antonio," he said.
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