CAMRO, one of Europe’s largest data centre campuses, wins planning as Savills appointed

The CAMRO data centre campus in Cambridgeshire, set to be one of the largest in Europe, has been granted full planning approval by Cambridgeshire County Council. The consent comprises 700,000 sq ft of data centre space, alongside additional plant, services and infrastructure, with the ability to deliver 180MVA to the scheme via UK Power Networks (UKPN).

Situated to the west of Ely, CAMRO will be developed in phases, the first of which already has 25MW to enable quick delivery of services, with an on-site substation constructed and energised to deliver power to the first tenants.

Adjoining the CAMRO site is a further 57 acres of land, available for future expansion of the data centre campus, or for generation of private wire renewable power solutions, subject to planning.

The receipt of planning coincides with the appointment of Savills to secure a partner to take the development forward.

Scott Newcombe, head of EMEA data centre advisory at Savills, comments: “Upon development, CAMRO will be one of the leading data centre campuses in Europe. The site has significant power capacity, as well as potential for future expansion. We see continuing challenges with power and land in London, meaning locations such as this will be prime targets in the decentralisation of the UK data centre market. There will be very few available with this level of power and scale of land.

“Within Cambridgeshire, there is significant demand from tech, research and life science occupiers, with Cambridge itself recently named as the UK’s top tech hub outside of London. This is ahead of Manchester, another key hotspot outside of the capital. Consequently, this location really resonates, especially for those investors looking to enter a new market. Given the rare nature of this opportunity, we anticipate considerable interest from both investors and operators.”

The planning consent follows a report in November last year by Aritzon predicting a 50% increase in the value of the European data centre market by 2027, with the sector expected to grow to USD7.46 billion.