DZ Series

Case Study: Temporary Warehouse

Maintain Shipping Operations During Construction

As part of a long-term renovation project to modernize its pork processing plant in Fremont, NE, Wholestone Farms tapped Dockzilla for a modular distribution solution. The company needed to add a facility that would replicate its shipping operations during warehouse construction — without the significant investment, lead time, or permanence involved with stick-built construction.  Dockzilla combined its expertise in loading docks and logistics with modular construction concepts to connect a 7,376 sq. ft. “temp-dock” facility to Wholestone Farms’ warehouse.  The company plans to utilize their modular distribution center for three years and eventually relocate their investment elsewhere on the property when construction wraps.

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Dockzilla engineered a monolithic building extension that enabled forklifts to travel between the “temp-docks” and the customer’s permanent warehouse.  The engineering team collaborated with the customer’s general contractor to deliver an elevated, dock height structure that addressed property nuances and other requirements, such as:  

  • Building Style – elevated workspace or ground-mounted
  • Loading Operations – square footage, # of dock positions & leveler options
  • Duration – to determine permitting, potential hard-wiring, sprinkler needs, etc.
  • Site challenges – drainage & utilities placement, trailer turning paths & parking
  • Refrigerated Warehouse – to determine insulation, coolers, compressors, and power 
  • Personnel – onsite office, reception, rest rooms, or other employee needs

PREP:  DZ engineers surveyed the customer’s site and included details to ensure material handling efficiency and forklift operator safety. They incorporated a slight incline into one of the platform sections to accommodate a discrepancy in the property’s existing grade, and they integrated a steel transition plate to bridge gaps between the permanent and temporary facilities.  Dockzilla’s design also connected two sections of the warehouse that were previously segregated from each other, which streamlined forklift traffic patterns.

DESIGN:  The customized warehouse configuration utilized 37 self-supported, steel platform sections that kitted together to form an elevated foundation.  Cross-bracing and adjustable base plate footing supported the platform to handle daily loading dynamics such as forklift and trailer impact.  The refrigerated warehouse structure featured 10 externally-mounted loading dock levelers to ensure thermal integrity of the building. 

PROJECT MANAGEMENT:  DZ’s project management team provided oversight of the project milestones and worked at the customer’s site throughout the installation to supervise and inspect deliveries – from arrival of the platform sections to the build-out of the refrigerated warehouse structure.  

“Dockzilla leverages its loading dock experience to take the guesswork out of standing up modular warehouse and distribution centers.  Our structures arrive onsite as pre-engineered, pre-fabricated sections that easily kit together to deliver loading dock facilities – at a fraction of the time and cost as stick-built construction.”

– Nick Haugen, Dockzilla Project Manager

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“Dockzilla’s ‘temp-docks’ are literally helping us bridge the gap between our current operations and the future state of our business.  The modular shipping facility allows us to maintain business continuity during construction and eventually relocate the structure to maximize our investment.  Dockzilla’s modular shipping facility concept has a significant advantage over stick-built construction due to velocity – their team had our new loading docks up and running in a few weeks.”

Steven Weers, VP & GM of Operations, WholeStone Farms

Modular Warehouse Specs:

Building extension guides forklifts between facilities

10 dock height loading docks to service standard trailers

Refrigeration for integrity of food shipments

Spans over existing drainage placement for easy access

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BUILDING EXTENSION MODULAR WAREHOUSE

The self-supported steel platform extends from the existing facility to create a pathway for forklifts into the temporary, elevated warehouse.

Self-supported, freestanding dock levelers are placed on the platform’s exterior & the warehouse structure is built on top of the platform.

The high strength PVC canopy is tensioned below the platform and “sandwiched” with a retainer bar to create a continuous seal.

Refrigeration components are installed, including insulation, compressors, and evaporators for food distribution needs.

Dock door frames are mounted on self-standing dock levelers on the outside of the modular facility.

Dock House-style exterior levelers allow the doors to close on the surface, creating a thermal seal and preserving inside temps.

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