When becoming a new member at any IXP, the initial set up process is not easy, one has to establish bilateral agreements with the other members that are already connected. Each peering requires a separate neighbor configuration, requires time and effort.
A route server makes this task easier. When peering with the route server the new member “peers directly” with all other members that also peer with it. This simplifies the configurations (one BGP peering for all members connected to the Route Server), improves performance and reliability (can act as a backup for other bilateral agreements).
By peering with the route server, any member can still pursue bilateral agreements with other members that are connected (or not) to the route server.
GigaPIX has set up route servers in Lisbon and Porto sites.