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Queensland Education Department to migrate out of flood-damaged data centre

by Paris Cowan •
Free resource

Queensland’s Department of Education, Training and Employment (DETE) is getting towards the business end of its migration out of the Neville Bonner Building data centre in the Brisbane CBD, and to a CITEC managed facility within the Polaris data centre at Springfield.

It has approached the market for six ICT contractors to assist in the migration over 12 to 14 weeks starting from the end of October 2012.

The Brisbane facility currently hosts business critical systems for the Department’s vocational and educational training (VET) operations, such as the State’s TAFEs. However it was one of many pieces of metropolitan infrastructure damaged in the Queensland floods of 2011.

“All ICT services delivered to training were affected,” says the request for tenders (RFT). “This caused outages that impacted TAFE Institutes, Registered Training Organisations (RTOs), private providers and Training corporate users. [It] does not provide adequate redundancy or disaster recovery for critical business applications.”

The Neville Bonner data centre facilities are being decommissioned as a result.

Flood or no flood, however, DETE is also required to migrate its data centre demand to one of two facilities managed by CITEC in accordance with the Queensland Government Data Centre Strategy, launched in August 2011.

Under the Strategy, all Queensland agencies are required to consolidate data centre usage by migrating to one of two primary facilities owned or leased by the State, a Tier II data centre Edward Street in the Brisbane CBD and the Tier III Polaris facility. It is anticipated that this consolidation will be completed by about mid-2013.

The Queensland Government signed a ten year lease for 2,000 square metres of technical space within Polaris in 2009, with another ten years of options to extend after that.

As it conducts its whole-of-government ICT audit, the new Queensland Government will also have to consider what to do about its second primary data centre facility, at Edward Street, which has just reached 26 years in operation and which will reach the end of its usable lifetime in 2017 at the latest. The facility is currently running at capacity with growth in agency demand projected to continue at roughly 10 per cent per annum.

The development of a business case for the replacement of the Edward Street facility is one of 25 initiatives of the Toward Q2 through ICT strategy that survived the dissolution of the State-wide strategy by the incoming Newman Coalition in May 2012.

Their Coalition neighbours in NSW, lead by Barry O’Farrell, signed a ten year lease for two purpose built facilities currently being constructed by Metronode earlier this year, at a value of $182 million. Under the NSW arrangement, Metronode will finance, build and manage the facilities with the Government committing to transitioning across 8MW of agency load.

The NSW Government estimates that the data centre consolidation will save it $230 million over its first ten years, and $300 million over 15 years.

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  • QLD
  • IT Services
  • Education
  • Polaris
  • Queensland Data Centre Strategy
  • Queensland DETE
  • Data Centres