The internet does not live in the cloud, despite what you may have heard. It exists as a series of servers linked together by cables, with the servers that physical hold our photos, emails, bank details and websites housed in buildings called data centres.
These data centres are the most important buildings of the internet age. Throughout history every era has had a building typology that has come to represent it. For the Greeks and many early civilisations it was the temple, the medieval age is typified by the castle, the middle-ages by the Gothic church, the Renaissance by the palace, the Elizabethan age by the country house, the modern age by white housing, post-war years the brutalist estate and the late 20th century by the museum.
The building that best represents the internet age is the data centre, yet little is known about them and the typology has been little discussed architecturally.
In the most part these buildings are largely anonymous, attempting to blend in and hide in the city. Most likely you will have passed one and assumed it is an office or a warehouse.
Through this project I will map and photograph the data centres in London to help us all gain a better understanding of one the most important building typologies in our city.