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[IMGCAP(1)]DALLAS-Koll Development Co., taking a cue from corporate clients’ space needs in the past two years, has added a mission-critical data expert and two other senior executives to its roster. In all, the Dallas-based developer has picked up more than 75 years of experience for the bricks-and-mortar team.

Ab Atkins, founder of Atkins Property Co. LLC, has stepped into a newly created post as senior vice president to head up a mission critical development initiative. Also coming on board is Robert Browning as vice president and Frank Benenate as senior project manager.

Browning, previously with Arlington, VA-based Mills Corp., is a high-rise design veteran whose credentials include 108 N. State St., a $500-million mixed-use project in Downtown Chicago. He will be the point man for the development team of the one-million-sf first phase of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas’ campus at 1001 E. Lookout Dr. in Richardson.

Benenate, formerly with MAPP Construction LLC in Dallas, is considered a construction health and safety pro, specializing in interiors of all product type and ground-up shell and core development. [IMGCAP(2)]His first task will be project safety, scheduling and cost and quality control for San Ramon, CA-based Chevron Corp.’s 315,000-sf campus at 100 NorthPark Blvd. in Covington, LA. The fast-tracked, project got under way last year and will be ready for move-in next month by Chevron’s energy and production group, which is relocating from New Orleans. The project is under review for LEED Gold certification.

Nearly every project that Koll has under way has a mission-critical component, says Koll CEO Steve Van Amburgh. The developer also has nine mission-critical projects, representing $400 million of construction, under way in US markets.

“Two or three years ago, we didn’t see this as often as a requirement. What we’ve seen recently is a huge uptick in corporate demand for mission-critical data center space and there’s nothing available,” Van Amburgh tells GlobeSt.com. Leading the way are financial corporations and right behind are Internet-driven companies that have been growing exponentially, particularly in their online sales. “They can’t afford to have one day of no sales or activity because their website was down,” he says.

Van Amburgh says data center-style requests focus on raised floors, back-up generators, redundant power systems, fiber optic lines and dual power grids. Data center construction can cost $50 million to $500 million depending on the systems, particularly the mechanical components.

Atkins, a LEED-certified professional, has acquired and developed 25 mission-critical properties in Dallas/Fort Worth. Van Amburgh says there will be three more added to his resume within 30 days when Koll unleashes details for mission-critical projects on sites in Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston and the Arizona-Nevada border.

Van Amburgh isn’t planning any spec construction of mission-critical space, but he’s also not ruling it out for the future. The only way to make it profitable, though, would be to build shells with “the proper power, fiber and design, but empty on the inside,” he says. “It’s a consideration, but we have to be careful because each company’s data center requirements are different. It’s not prudent unless it’s done as shell.”

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