Automated Data Processing: PC System  

by WBDG Staff



Automated Data Processing Center for PC System (ADP PC) space types is a facility for "horizontal" data processing systems including floor- and counter-mounted units with non-critical uptime requirements. ADP PC space types include facilities for servers contained in individual equipment towers.

Space Attributes

Because of the computer and electronic equipment housed within the ADP PC, the spaces require regulated temperature and humidity (usually accomplish by zoned systems), and reliable power 24 hours per day. Typical features of ADP PC space types include the list of applicable design objectives elements as outlined below. For a complete list and definitions of the design objectives within the context of whole building design, click on the titles below.

Functional / Operational

  • Occupancy: Occupancy Classification for ADP PC is Business Occupancy B2, with sprinkler protected construction and GSA Acoustical Class B2 for spaces with concentrations of noisy equipment.

  • Raised floors: Raised floors are the preferred system for distribution of critical services (power, voice, data, and HVAC) in ADP PC space types. Raised floors for ADP PC may have low-pressure high induction diffusers and be constructed of concrete filled metal pans at 24"; modules with pedestal and stringer support, with intermediate support.

Open view of raised floor with view of cables etc. in ADP PC System space

Raised flooring offers ease of access and storage of distribution systems.

  • Dual path service lines for power: Dual path service lines ensure a constant power supply, which is critical to the operations of ADP PC with concentrations of noisy equipment.

  • Redundant cooling unit: ADP PC space types are usually equipped with redundant cooling capacity to maintain the low temperature required by the computer equipment. This could consist of a split air-cooled, air-conditioning unit with 24-hour operation and setback thermostats. Acoustical transfer ducts should be installed at all acoustically rated partitions for noise control. For more information, see WBDG High-Performance HVAC.


  • Acoustic control: Sound baffles are provided at all acoustically rated partitions for the air supply system to control noise.

  • Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS): Emergency power and uninterruptible power supply (UPS) are provided to meet all electrical requirements of the entire ADP PC (server) facility for at least 30 minutes. For more information, see WBDG Productive—Assure Reliable Systems and Spaces.

Single unit UPS system
Server room example of UPS system

UPS systems range in a variety of capacities from small to server room size.

Secure / Safe


IT systems, including PCs, data storage, and data processing are energy intensive activities. However, many options can be considered to reduce energy use while also increasing efficiencies and reducing overall costs. Many organizations are developing plans to modernize data centers to realize their full potential while also reducing their impact on the environment. Best practices include utilizing the latest technologies such as virtualization technology and cloud computing. Additionally, data center design footprint can be reduced by using high-density cooling and power equipment. For areas of a data center that create a lot of heat, zone cooling devices can be deployed.

Example Program

The following is a representative building program.


Tenant Occupiable Areas
Qty. SF Each Space Req'd. Sum Actual SF Tenant Usable Factor Tenant USF
Facilities       936    
    Supervisor Office 1 100 100      
    Support Technician Workstation 2 80 160      
    Reference Library 4 12 48      
    Magnetic Media Storage 4 12 48      
    Server Racks/Towers 24 8 192      
    Multiplexor/Controller Racks 2 22 44      
    Printer 2 22 44      
    HVAC Unit 1 60 60      
    Supplies and Parts Storage 1 120 120      
    LAN Switches/
    Telephone Switches
1 60 60      
    Electrical Room 1 60 60      
    Tenant Suite     936 936 1.31 1,227
Tenant Usable Areas           1,227

Example Plans

The following is representative of typical tenant plans.

Tenant plan -layout- of ADP PC Intensive Space Type

Example Construction Criteria

For GSA, the unit costs for ADP PC space types are based on the construction quality and design features in the following table . This information is based on GSA's benchmark interpretation and could be different for other owners.

Relevant Codes and Standards

The following agencies and organizations have developed codes and standards affecting the design of ADP PC spaces. Note that the codes and standards are minimum requirements. Architects, engineers, and consultants should consider exceeding the applicable requirements whenever possible:

Additional Resources


Building Types

Educational Facilities, Federal Courthouse, Health Care Facilities, Land Port of Entry, Libraries, Office Building, Research Facilities, Warehouse

Design Objectives

Functional/Operational—Ensure Appropriate Products/Systems Integration, Productive—Assure Reliable Systems and Spaces, Secure / Safe—Security for Building Occupants and Assets

Case Study

Emerson Global Data Center

Building Commissioning

Building Commissioning