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City of Yarra chooses APC for complete data centre refit

The City of Yarra is an inner metropolitan municipality in Melbourne, which is home to a diverse community of around 73,500 people. It also features lively arts and entertainment precincts, vibrant shopping and café strips, and numerous sports and recreational facilities.


City of Yarra


Local Government


Melbourne, Australia


Icon Eye


City of Yarra’s data centre was at the end of its life. The server room was not up to standard and a lack of environmental monitoring meant the systems could not be checked

Legacy air conditioning and numerous UPS units resulted in inefficient cooling and power usage

The Heritage building housing the data centre prevented any structural changes when upgrading the equipment


InfraStruxure 20kW N+1

InRow SC Units

Racks with accessories including built-in UPS

Environment monitoring


Recovered space by implementing a virtualised environment with new racks and overhead cabling

The modular data centre enables City of Yarra to expand its facility if necessary

APC’s InRow cooling allows City of Yarra to move the entire system to a new location if necessary

Local Government is no longer just about rates, roads and rubbish. Council spends millions of dollars delivering a variety of services that serve the needs of its diverse community.
These include community services such as child care, aged care, meal deliveries and library services; maintaining and upgrading local assets such as parks, roads, bike trails, footpaths and ageing infrastructure; protecting and maintaining the local environment; providing quality recreational facilities; graffiti removal; garbage and recycling collections; street cleaning; paying for street signs and lighting; and community advocacy.

The City’s data centre is used to ensure the council and the municipality operate smoothly. It is the backbone that keeps all the other services running smoothly and on time. Everything from parking permits to meal deliveries are processed through the Council’s data centre.

In need of repair

In early 2007, City of Yarra’s data centre was in need of a make-over. With over-heating problems, insufficient air conditioning, cabling problems and a lack of space to expand into, the situation was becoming quite urgent.

“We had no environmental monitoring, so there were no warning systems when the data centre was overheating,” said Peter Kaczmarek, Chief Information Officer, City of Yarra.

A further challenge was the Heritage listed building, which could have no structural changes to accommodate changes in technology. The data centre site runs across two rooms with no option to enlarge the space, or change the layout. APC’s modular solution, combined with the virtualised environment, enabled City of Yarra to reduce the space required and has even freed up some space for future expansion.

APC’s solution was perfect for our needs, giving us maximum flexibility.

With a move towards a virtualised environment, City of Yarra needed to upgrade its entire data centre infrastructure to ensure the high-density servers didn’t overheat.

“We had to expand our capacity, without expanding our space,” said Kaczmarek, “and that’s quite a challenge. Virtualisation is a logical solution, but then what do you do about the heat spots caused by this high-density technology?”

Finding a Solution

City of Yarra solved this problem with APC. Implementing APC’s InfraStruxure solution provided “on-demand” architecture for power, cooling and services in a rack-optimised format. To work effectively as an integrated system, all three elements of power, rack and cooling are highly manageable and serviceable.

The solution is fully modular, allowing City of Yarra the option to expand in the future. It also contains built-in UPS battery back-up, providing that all-important security for the Council’s data.

The solution is modular and easily portable, a factor that was critical to City of Yarra which is investigating the benefits of centralising its three main office buildings into one location.

“With InRow cooling, you take the cooling wherever your rack goes, rather than having an expensive air conditioning unit built into the wall,” said Kaczmarek. “APC’s solution was perfect for our needs, giving us maximum flexibility.”

In addition, the InfraStruxure solution provides a tidy and organised overhead cable storage system, eliminating the requirement for a raised floor.

Kaczmarek said: “We have moved from a data centre that was bursting at the seams, with cables everywhere, hotspots and frequent technology problems, to one that is more efficient, more manageable and tidier. We have our cabling and passive equipment in one room and the other room is for our racks and servers.”

As well as finding a modular, portable, self-contained solution, City of Yarra was keen to introduce environmental monitoring to ensure the new data centre equipment was free from problems. The Council can now centrally monitor the temperature, humidity and battery power in the data centre, enabling it to quickly and efficiently intervene to prevent problems occurring.

A well-reasoned choice

City of Yarra chose APC for its ability to address the requirements of the data centre. “I have a long-term relationship with APC, utilised APC solutions previously, and they have always delivered the best solution, on time and on budget,” said Kaczmarek.

“Added to that, the team is very helpful and a pleasure to work with. So, it’s a logical choice,” he said. ”


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