This new fresh produce distribution centre is being developed for Countdown. Located in Wiri, Auckland, the site will include a 2ha indoor floor area and will centralise Countdown's fresh product operations in Auckland. Countdown's new temperature-controlled building will be chilled in zones of 2 degrees for leafy vegetables, grapes and apples, 7 degrees for citrus and capsicums and 13 degrees for avocados, bananas, tomatoes and potatoes. There will also be a large ripening area built specifically for avocados and bananas.
Originally a quarry which was a pit of 20m deep at some points, the land was filled over many years with the upper layers formed with material from the Waterview Tunnel. The building will be linked to the adjacent Hilton Foods warehouse to the West via an air bridge. An automated conveyor within the air bridge will deliver packaged meat products to the distribution centre, allowing trucks to be loaded with both veggies, fruit and meat at the same time - reducing carbon emissions and providing efficiencies of scale. The building will be able to handle 350,000 crates of fresh produce at one time and will operate 24 hours a day seven days a week.
At its highest point the warehouse is 17m high with an internal ceiling height of up to 12m. At 200m long and 100m wide the main building is equivalent to 4 rugby fields. Keeping this two hectare fridge cool is a key component of the project with the building and energy systems designed for both performance and energy efficiency.
Greenstone Group were engaged at completion of the concept design which was then revisited with our input. The scope of the role carried out by Greenstone on this project includes design management, consultant procurement & management, main contractor procurement, local authority consenting, risk management, and construction administration.
The project is targeting a 4 Star Green Star Built Certification using the new Green Star Design and As Built New Zealand v1.0 rating tool. This will be the first time this tool has been used for a building of this type and will evaluate the environmental design and construction of the facility based on a number of criteria including energy and water efficiency, indoor environmental quality and resource conservation.
Careful selection and consideration has been required for materials and plant selection, manufacture, construction, commissioning, handover and maintenance activities to ensure Countdown’s sustainability targets are reached. Construction of a large solar array on the roof to provide power to the site, as well as hybrid low-water usage refrigeration condensers, are just two examples of how Countdown plans to reduce the facilities overall energy and water usage.
The project is well underway with construction starting in September 2020 and the distribution centre going live in mid 2022.