The thick concrete walls of a long-abandoned Second World War German submarine base in Marseille, southern France, are set to find a new purpose: keeping banks of computer servers safe and cool.
Dutch cloud services firm Interxion plans to invest €140 million to turn the “Martha Base” bunker — which was built in 1943 to accommodate up to 20 U-boats but was never completed — into a data centre for corporate clients.
The first part of the restoration is set to be completed by March. “It is not our job to restore historical buildings, usually we build from scratch. But this was an opportunity and Marseille is a major telecoms, cloud and digital hub between Europe, Africa, the Middle-East and Asia,” Interxion France director Fabrice Coquio said.