Croke Park brings IT into sustainability project with great success

Croke Park has been at the heart of Irish sporting life for more than 100 years. Boasting a capacity for 82,300 people, the stadium is the home of Gaelic games and the headquarters of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA). Since 2008 Croke Park has become a leader in green initiatives having taken a holistic, sustainable approach to stadium operations. It is one of the first sports stadiums in the world to achieve certification in the recently released ISO 20121 Event Sustainability Management System International Standard.

Croke Park brings IT into sustainability project with great success
The Challenge

In order to maintain and improve event sustainability management systems still further, the organisation sought to identify areas where they could cut energy costs and, at the same time, improve efficiency. The GAA and Croke Park’s core IT Infrastructure was an area identified to improve sustainability. Servers had been procured over time to support specific tasks and projects, resulting in many different operating systems and hardware builds. Updates were therefore a complex and time consuming process, whilst additional hardware would often have to be commissioned to support new applications.

The Solution

Trilogy Technologies undertook an audit of the GAA and Croke Park’s core server technology infrastructure. They decided Croke Park needed to have a centralised server to immediately provide greater control, a more stable infrastructure and be more energy efficient. IT Experts looked at system performance, business needs and future planning to create a project that would ultimately provide a cost effective, high capacity, high performance centralised solution. Trilogy along with IT professionals from Croke Park  put in place a strategy to design a Private Cloud solution which would embrace both current requirements and future growth within an agreed budget.

The Result

The move to a virtualized environment resulted in less complex management along with impressive power consumption and air conditioning savings. The consolidation of applications from physical to virtual servers means there is now a single point of control.  The solution involved implementation of a private cloud infrastructure built around energy efficient NetApp Storage and VMWare VSphere Software which enabled the organisation to replace over 30 physical servers with a new Private Cloud Infrastructure.

This solution provides Croke Park with a readily available fully redundant platform to run its core administration, match day and building management systems while offering automatic failover, business continuity and disaster recovery. In compliance with Croke Park Stadium’s energy efficiency initiatives, the new Private Cloud Infrastructure has a power consumption of 10,512 kWh compared to the previous physical infrastructure which consumed approximately 70,080 kWh. Real-time monitoring allows Croke Park to comprehensively track where and how electricity is consumed and can offer opportunities to better manage a server’s power draw. The complete solution is underpinned by a 24/7/365 outsourced Trilogy Managed Service contract.

achievements

  • Improved ease of management with impressive power consumption and air conditioning savings
  • Efficient management of applications from a single point of control
  • Annual power savings of 59,568 kWh - plus the annual environmental impact results in savings in carbon emissions of 31.61 kg which is equivalent to 13 cars off the road and 42 newly planted broadleaf trees
  • A readily available, fully redundant platform to run core administration, match day and building management systems while offering automatic failover, business continuity and disaster recovery

client perspective

" The virtualised cloud based solution that Trilogy has implemented gives Croke Park the stability and performance boost we need to meet our sustainability initiatives and reduce costs "

Declan Fanning, IT Manager