BOSTON—Launching one of the largest projects of its kind ever in New England, Cabot, Cabot & Forbes and the Globix Corp. held a groundbreaking this week for the 450,000-sf Globix SuperPOP Internet Data Center in the Allston area. It will be located in a former warehouse acquired last month by CC&F for $32 million.

The 282,000-sf property will be stripped to its steel and rebuilt with a third level. The asset, redesign by Boston architectural firm Elkus/Manfredi, features a masonry-and-glass exterior and extensive landscaping.

As in other parts of the country, the maturation of the telecommunications industry has had a dramatic impact on Boston’s commercial real estate industry. From virtually nothing two years ago, the region has seen demand for data centers explode to more than two million sf, according to Insignia/ESG. Similar projects are underway in suburban communities such as Waltham, Watertown and Burlington.

Initially conceived as a multi-tenant telecom and Internet facility, that plan was significantly altered when Globix committed to the entire site, according to CC&F president Jay Doherty. He expressed confidence in the project’s prospects given the building’s proximity to a major fiber-optic line, as well as its strong floor loads and elevated ceilings. It will also feature raised floors and drop ceilings to accommodate power and network cable. Globix will open its fourth data center when the Allston property comes on line in the second quarter of next year. It has other facilities in New York City, Santa Clara, CA and London.

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