This operations and distribution center includes 61,000 sf of high-end, two-story, Class A office space featuring a culinary center. Distribution areas consist of more than 150,000 sf of refrigerated storage space with eight temperature zones ranging from -20°F to +55°F, over 100,000 sf of ambient dry goods storage, 6,400 sf of refrigeration mechanical and electrical switchgear room. The warehouse component houses 25-foot-high stacks of supplies such as fresh produce, frozen foods, and paper products.
The facility is built on a former Norfolk Southern railroad repair yard, which had been remediated by the City of Knoxville and classified as a brownfield site. In addition, due to the complex nature of refrigeration systems and the building envelope in cold storage buildings, construction sequencing must begin in the freezer area and refrigeration mechanical room.
Working with a Tennessee-based civil engineering firm, BE&K Building Group designed the 44-acre site to accommodate and mitigate possible liabilities of the brownfield site by raising the grade of the property, minimizing the exposure to the existing soils during the installation of the site’s infrastructure. To address sequencing concerns, our design team rotated the building on its axis at the intersection of the cold and dry storage areas. By rotating the building, we were able to use the sitework to our advantage, positioning the freezer and refrigeration mechanical room in the area of the site requiring the least amount of cut and fill operations. This allowed foundations and subsequent activities to begin sooner. Rotating the building also drastically reduced the amount of major utility installations, shortening the overall schedule duration, and reducing cost by eliminating scope.