Data Centers

How Modern Meet-Me Room Design Can Give You a Competitive Edge

Denis Blouin

Find out how modern meet-me room design can give your data center a distinct competitive advantage in three areas: time to market, scalability and downtime.



Think of your data center’s meet-me room (MMR) as a gateway: a place that connects an organization to the outside world.


Acting as a middle ground between your space and the carriers that provide communications services, a meet-me room provides a secure area for a carrier to place equipment without gaining access to your data center or facility.


MMRs also eliminate round-trip traffic to make sure data stays inside the facility instead of traveling to the carrier’s main network and back, which lowers costs and boosts security.


Inside the meet-me room is where you’ll find the:

  • Cross-connect or main distribution frame (MDF)
  • Rack space for carrier services
  • Entrance facility (depending on the layout of your data center, the entrance facility may sometimes fall outside the MMR)


To support smooth internet exchange and data transmission,  must support modern digital demands, including higher density, the ability to scale and less downtime.


Your meet-me room design should enable these three competitive advantages within the data center.


1. Accelerated time to market and speed to deployment

In the U.S. market alone, data center demand is expected to reach 35 GW by 2030, up from 17 GW in 2022, according to McKinsey.


With demand on the rise, data centers will be looking for ways to make up time without sacrificing performance. Bringing your data center online as quickly as possible will help you generate revenue sooner and make sure that business isn’t being held back by physical infrastructure.


To accelerate time to market and speed to deployment, your connectivity architecture needs to be as efficient as possible. From optical distribution frames (ODFs) to cabling systems, the connectivity solutions you choose for your meet-me room should help you accelerate time to market instead of slowing you down. This starts with considerations like lead time and is a factor throughout installation and testing.


  • Solutions that are available quickly, such as through same-day shipping, so they won’t delay projects or create scheduling issues

  • Fast and easy installation that doesn’t require multiple or complex tools, reduces rework and minimizes the number of people involved so systems are up and running faster


2. Fast and efficient scalability

Scalability is all about growth. The ability to add or remove meet-me room resources quickly—whether it’s power, cooling, bandwidth or something else—without a complete rebuild of existing spaces or equipment helps your data center grow at a pace that fits the need of the business, its employees and its customers.


Intelligent design that puts scalability at the forefront can make a big difference when it comes to fast and efficient growth.


This means seeking out solutions that prioritize:

  • The ability to scale horizontally or vertically

  • Modularity, with standardized and interchangeable components that are simple to deploy, configure and reconfigure

  • High density to manage many terminations in a small footprint without increasing square footage as density needs increase

  • Migration and mass-scale capabilities to allow technology changes down the road without infrastructure changes, such as a move from Base-16 or Base-24


Standardized systems and procurement processes can help data center operators quickly ramp up installation of a new pod in a colocation space, for example, or provide framework and flexibility for moves, adds and changes so they aren’t restricted by physical infrastructure.


If you deploy assemblies often, for example, verify that your data center partner can turn them around quickly whenever you need them—according to an agreed-upon timeline—so you can quickly set up racks and cages.


3. Less downtime and fewer outages

When meet-me rooms are easier to operate and manage, they’re not only more efficient but also less susceptible to outages caused by human error. Many times, human error is caused by tedious tasks, unclear directions or manual processes.


According to the Uptime Institute’s 2023 Annual Outages Analysis report, 60% of data center sites have experienced an outage in the past three years. Of those, 25% say their most recent data center outage cost more than $1 million; 45% say their most recent outage cost between $100,000 and $1 million.


The report also reveals that human error played a role in up to 80% of these outages:

  • Staff failing to follow procedures (47%)
  • Faulty procedures (40%)
  • In-service issues (27%)
  • Installation issues (20%)
  • Insufficient staff resources (14%)
  • Preventative maintenance issues (12%)
  • Data center design issues (12%)


Connectivity solutions that can reduce human error are key to maintaining uptime and operations.


While reducing human error in the meet-me room is a multi-step process, there are simple things that can be done to reduce complexity and decrease the likelihood of mistakes.


For instance, proper labeling can help you keep track of what’s deployed where, the purpose of each component and what’s connected to what. Another example: Housing systems that offer complete and easy access around each connection for easy insertion and removal can make sure the wrong cable isn’t accidentally unplugged.


As your data center facilities grow, Belden can help you design the right architecture for your meet-me rooms. When it comes to meet-me room design and configuration, we can collaborate with you to meet requirements for reliable, efficient, scalable and rapid deployment.




Related resources: