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Data Center POST recently had the opportunity to interview Michael Christopher Orza, CEO of Webair. During our Q&A, Mr. Orza discusses the history of Webair’s flagship facility, NY1, from its auspicious beginnings as the home of New York publishing firm Doubleday, to its current status as Long Island’s most secure, fully-redundant data center.
Established in 2010, NY1 is a Tier III-rated, SSAE16 and HIPAA-compliant data center and the premier facility east of New York City for enterprise colocation, private and hybrid cloud solutions and managed services.
Data Center POST, Kathy Xu (DCP-KX) Question: What does Webair do? What challenges do you help solve?
Webair, Michael Christopher Orza (Webair-MCO) Answer: Webair is a high-touch, agile Cloud and fully managed infrastructure service provider, dedicated to providing customers with solutions designed to suit their unique needs as quickly and efficiently as possible. At Webair, we fully own and operate the entire technology stack end-to-end, from the physical date center to the end-user application, and offer a broad range of technology solutions including Public, Private and Hybrid Cloud, Cloud Storage, Bare Metal Servers, Colocation, Managed Security, Disaster Recovery, Off-site Backups, and Ransomware Recovery. With an international network of data centers in New York, Los Angeles, Montréal, Amsterdam and Hong Kong, our organization is designed to serve as a technology partner for customers across a broad range of industries.
(DCP-KX) Q: When was NY1 established and why did Webair choose the location?
(Webair-MCO) A: Our flagship NY1 data center was established in late 2010 at 501 Franklin Avenue in Garden City. Located on Long Island, NY1 is positioned just outside of the New York City blast zone, making it a prime location for reliable disaster recovery with low-latency connectivity to and around Manhattan. In addition, NY1 boasts direct access to multiple trans-Atlantic fiber landing points, as well as a diverse dark fiber ring to New York’s largest data centers.
(DCP-KX) Q: Who did you purchase the space from? What was the space used as before?
(Webair-MCO) A: Back in 2007, JetBlue chose to establish their global flight operations center at 501 Franklin Avenue for its exceptional available power and connectivity. Given that this facility would be the airline’s operational headquarters, it was critical that the facility maintain 100 percent uptime, making redundancy and security a top priority during its design. A few short years later, JetBlue came to the realization that it did not want to be in the business of managing large-scale digital infrastructure, and instead wanted to consume their infrastructure management as a service. Webair purchased the facility from JetBlue, who then became its customer.
(DCP-KX) Q: We heard that the building has quite a rich history. Can you tell us a few interesting tidbits?
(Webair-MCO) A: The building was built in the early 1900s by the American publishing firm Doubleday. Interestingly enough, Teddy Roosevelt himself returned to his home state of New York to lay the building’s cornerstone. In time, the company became Long Island’s largest content distributor, producing over 150,000 books a day.
(DCP-KX) Q: How do you compete with data centers in New Jersey who benefit from traditionally cheaper power than New York?
(Webair-MCO) A: Since Webair is an owner-operated New York-based organization that has made considerable investments in personnel and infrastructure, and because many New York State-owned organizations rely on Webair services, the state has provided our company with additional resources to ensure low energy costs, tax rebates, and other incentives. In addition, we have also made a commitment to minimize our impact on the environment, beginning with our power consumption. To that end, more than 40 percent of NY1’s facility power comes from Niagara Falls and other cost-effective, New York-based renewable energy resources.
(DCP-KX) Q: Can you describe the connectivity landscape in your building?
(Webair-MCO) A: NY1 provides customers with direct connectivity to multiple trans-Atlantic cable networks as well as access to Manhattan Bypass fiber. The facility boasts more than 30 networks, direct access to third-party network fabrics PacketFabric and Megaport, and a diverse dark fiber ring connecting NY1 to key Points of Presence in New York, including 60 Hudson Street, 32 Avenue of the Americas and 111 8th Avenue, with protected transport, dark waves and dark fiber available to all carriers in those facilities. For customers looking to move their workloads to hyperscale cloud providers, our deployment model enables SLA-backed Managed Cloud Services delivered inside customers’ internal networks to be consumed as though they are on-premises
(DCP-KX) Q: What do customers leverage this facility for? What is one of the key services available at this data center?
(Webair-MCO) A: Many NY1 customers leverage the facility for its ecosystem of managed services, mixing and matching platforms to create a custom solution to suit their individual workloads. Whether our customers’ infrastructure is housed in Webair’s NY1 or a hyperscaler, we’re here to take on the responsibility of managing, monitoring, scaling and securing their deployments. Among these services, Disaster Recovery-as-a-Service (DRaaS) is one of the most popular solutions available at NY1, as it helps to ensure instant recovery from Ransomware attacks, hardware loss and software issues via scalable replication with off-site backups. NY1 also provides tenants with readily available access to Public, Private and Hybrid Cloud solutions designed for ultimate scalability, reliability and performance.
(DCP-KX) Q: Do you have any expansion plans within the building or surrounding property?
(Webair-MCO) A: Absolutely. We are making considerable investments into the facility, adding 200 additional cabinets over the next two years, and installing new HVAC units and generators. In addition, we are looking into opening a second Webair facility on Long Island within the next few years.