A former data center on the Channel Island of Jersey is set to become the local water utility's new headquarters.

The Jersey Evening Post and Baliwick Express report Jersey Water has applied for planning permission to redevelop an industrial building in St. Saviour parish for a new headquarters.

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– Jersey Water

A two-story industrial building located at 3 La Rue Sinnatt in the Rue des Prés trading estate, Jersey Water purchased the vacant building at the end of last year in order to bring its industrial and commercial divisions under one roof.

The site – formerly an office and backup & disaster recovery facility – was previously operated by C5 Alliance, and Itex before that. The site spans around 1,690 sqm (18,160 sq ft).

C5 – part of local services firm BDO – acquired Itex around 2013 and took over the site. Dating back to the early 1990s, the property was in use as a data center from 1996 to December 2022.

“In 2022 C5 Alliance closed the disaster recovery part of their business and decided to sell the building as part of a strategic decision. This was driven by the lack of demand for disaster recovery office suites on the Island due to modern “Cloud” data hosting facilities and post-pandemic trends such as working remotely or from home,” a Jersey Water planning document says.

C5 also operates a data center on the island of Guernsey on Braye Road. In 2015 C5 announced a partnership with Virtus to allow Channel Island businesses to host data offshore in the UK.

In a statement submitted as part of the planning application, the water utility said: “The application seeks to fully refurbish and environmentally improve the existing building for sole occupation by Jersey Water.”

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– Google Maps

Proposed changes include creating a commercial store area, a plant testing workshop and water testing laboratory on the ground floor; and a store on a first-floor mezzanine.

Helier Smith, chief executive of Jersey Water, said: “This is a significant milestone for our 140-year-old company; this investment supports the long-term future of the Island’s essential water supply and the important role that we play in serving our community.

“With our customers very much in mind, our new property will bring our people and services together under one roof, so we become more operationally efficient and deliver improved service for generations to come.”

The utility was previously based at Mulcaster House off Westmount Road, but sold it to the government for £3.2m in 2021. The site was set to be turned into a new hospital, but the plan was scrapped in late 2022.

Local architecture and design practice, Elliott Design Partnership, has devised the scheme and submitted the plans on behalf of Jersey Water.