Changing the Market: Hill Country Telco Opens Data Center

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The saying “everything’s bigger in Texas” sure rings true for Hill Country Telephone Cooperative (HCTC). What started out as a possible building renovation turned into the construction of an entirely new and larger headquarters campus. What’s more, the new property will contain a brand new standalone data center, making HCTC the first small telecommunications provider in Texas to have one.

Like many other companies in the industry, business is changing for HCTC so it’s preparing for what’s next, looking ahead five years as the company evolves and develops into a regional player serving small business and residential clients. We worked with HCTC to come up with a solution that could support ongoing objectives and scale for growth as their business needs expand.

Through the new data center, HCTC will meet current customer needs — providing data storage, turn-key solutions, bandwidth and direct fiber connections.

Plus, the technology will enable expansion of HCTC’s services to a wider range of businesses and additional industries like municipalities, police departments and schools.

Seeing the Solution

For a hands on experience, HCTC visited the Schneider Electric Technology Center (SETC) in St. Louis to see how our data center products and solutions work. It was at the SETC that we were able to share the breadth of our services, including complete design/build support, with the team and expand our work with HCTC to encompass the entire build of the data center project. Once requirements were established and HCTC understood the full scope of our capabilities — that we could handle the entire data center lifecycle — the project was divided into two parts.

First we tackled the design/build of the physical structure and then the selection and installation of data center equipment and solutions. Project managers from HCTC and Schneider Electric worked together to ensure the building met all of the physical specs. And it was important to match the data center aesthetics to the look of the new headquarters facility.

A redundant, scalable, power protection system designed to provide high levels of availability was put in place. We also installed InRow Chilled Water Cooling with EcoAisle Containment to simplify cooling and address efficiency needs. In fact, the entire cooling process meets ASHRAE class 1 and 2 standards.

Data center infrastructure management (DCIM) tool StruxureWare for Data Centers was deployed to monitor, collect and manage data, and optimize the entire operation. The real-time data enables on demand adjustments and keeps complex data consolidated.

Initially, the data center will be used for HCTC’s own operations and its central office switch, but the company will soon be marketing its services and anticipates growth by the end of the year.  You can find more details about our work with Hill Country Telephone Cooperative in our case study.

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