I’m not sure as to what scale you are going for here or how many end users you will have on staff but I might be able to give you some ideas for the creation. I’ve seen data centers at multiple universities, XO communications, local ISP providers, and even call centers that have only 6 users aside from administrative staff.
I just toured the Fibernet Datacenter in Orem Utah a few weeks ago and was greatly impressed by the layout that they chose. A lot of the high points went into the construction of the building itself. Each floor was on a concrete slab letting them have protection from any mechanical malfunctions on the floor above the datacenter, such as the water heater failing and running hundred of gallons of water all weekend until some one noticed water going out the vents on the top floor, every floor under it was protected because the water had no outlet to get downstairs, just a solid slab of concrete that funneled the water outside. They had a 15in raised floor on each level with channels to run wire or pipe work that would contain any accidents until they could be repaired as well as easy access for running new components. The backup generators were capable to output twice the amount of power as the building takes in case of power outages and ran on propane for extended use, the propane lines were supplied from two different sources in the valley where the building sits in case of a natural disaster cutting off one of the lines.
The thing that caught my eye mostly was the power bump backup technology they implemented. They used conventional battery storage accompanied by a Flywheel UPS system which has no degradation of battery life as it cycles through power http://www.pentadyne.com/site/our-products/technology.html these backup systems have a lower power usage and don’t need to be replaced every few years. It’s not a bad addition to conventional battery use.
The cooling unit was designed for loadbalancing on the heat. Each fan was designed to start up in a series when the building needed to be cooled letting the other one’s rest, if too much heat was supplied for a single exhaust fan to handle then the next one in the series would start and help vent.
Be cautious with the security leading directly to the servers as well. A magnetic lock that will stay enabled during a power outage is recommended. Cameras and specific user access via electronic key cards are usually a good idea, that way if an employee is let go and doesnt return his key you can disable it through a central computer.
The fire suppression system was set up for zones, if there is a fire then only the sprinkler head above will activate. This is a bit of a hazard but with the raised flooring only the cage directly under the sprinkler head will be effected. Utah law states that any system other than a water based fire suppression system needs to be tested every 6 months, the Halon system which is another option for fire suppression costs about $6,000 to test and recharge if there is a fire. Fibernet opted to go with the water based system so it can pass the savings on to their customers.
For secondary security they even made personal closets for users that want privacy for their servers. Each closet is outfitted with connections, UPS backups, and a rack with a KVM switch that can be connected to each hardware mount.
Some things you may want to look into while you design the datacenter –
Are you looking to build your own building for the data center or use a preexisting building?
What kind of power backup are you interested in?
How much storage do you think you’ll need for racks?
How big of an IT department will be supporting your datacenter? To stay down on costs for this one you may want to look at getting telecom/comp science students at a local college employed under 2 or 3 regular IT people.
What type of service do you want to offer your customers?
How much of a connection will you need for remote users and data hosting?
If you run out of room in the server center how will you cope? (Movable security walls might be an option)
What type of fire suppression system do you want to have?
How much security do you want around the server room?
That’s just the tip of the iceberg, I’m not sure if there are any templates per-say regarding data center creation but I can offer more help if you need it. I’ll keep adding to this as I think of more high points. Just keep in mind that this is the best data center I have ever seen. If was to design a perfect center this place would have more than I could have ever imagined.
The cost for running and developing the center is based on the quality of service that you want to offer your clients. If you use top of the line equipment you can charge a bit more but you’ll also have a bigger starting investment.