War for the Web
08 11.12

Sandy and the Internet

There were some real heroes keeping the Internet moving during Hurricane Sandy. The Internet is a vast entity that literally spans the globe, but downtown New York City, and the Jersey shore are incredible important to the Internet in the United States and all over the world. In fact, 60 Hudson street, in downtown NYC, is perhaps the most important Internet hub on the east coast; it’s also on the edge of Zone A in Manhattan, and both flooded and lost power during the hurricane.

60 Hudson Street was built in 1929 as a communications hub for Western Telegraph; the telecommunications giant of its day. It’s still a massive telecommunications hub for the entire world. we had the good fortune of touring Telx, a co-location facility based in 60 Hudson Street, for our feature documentary, War for the Web. Their entire facility is massively impressive, with thousands of wires pumping millions of gigabytes of data from carrier to carrier throughout the day. There are lots of fail safes in place to prevent Telx from ever going down, but there is one element absolutely necessary to continued service: electricity.

And that’s where the heroes of 60 Hudson Street emerged. Shaun Mooney, property manager and former Marine, organized a massive effort to keep the entire building, and its vital telecommunications infrastructure, up and running. People slept on cots, monitored conditions around the clock, opened windows to maintain the correct air pressure, and even called in Homeland Security for backup when fuel for the generators running the building ran low. Without this amazing effort, the Internet in the New York City, the United States, and all over the world could have faced serious problems. Read more at Newsweek.

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