Dot Foods Greenfield Cold Storage Warehouse
Bullhead City, Ariz.
Best Project

Owner/Developer: Dot Foods Inc.
General Contractor: Primus Builders
Lead Design Firm, Structural, MEP Engineer: Primus Design Services LLC
Civil Engineer: HELM
Refrigeration: Republic Refrigeration

This $23-million warehouse brings cold storage to one of the country’s hottest places.

The extreme conditions, topography and the site’s isolated nature posed a major challenge to the construction team as contractors completed a majority of the work during the summer and in temperatures exceeding 120 degrees.

To address the heat issue, contractors started work at 2 a.m. When the sun came up, the project team brought a cooling wagon on site, providing workers a place to stabilize their body temperatures. Long term, the building’s design includes overhangs to reduce heat and glare.

Maricella Pollard, Primus Builders superintendent, conducted weekly meetings that required input from every subcontractor. Subcontractors were also required to communicate and work together.

“When the subs are all together and see the impact each activity has on meeting the project’s goals, they work together to figure out how to get the job done,” Pollard says. “That drove the schedule and kept us on track.”

To resolve problems in the field, Pollard used Facetime to troubleshoot with the designers to find solutions using existing materials or equipment.

“Having the design team in my back pocket made all the difference,” she says.

The 190,000-sq-ft distribution complex includes a freezer, 20 dock doors, office space, a large break/recreation room, cold dock and dry storage, and xeriscaping.

Crews uncovered boulders during site excavation, which posed a threat to the budget and schedule. In response, general contractor Primus procured a screener to separate and sort the rock into piles that were later used for landscaping and shoring up retention ponds.

As ammonia was present in the worksite (ammonia is a fundamental component of refrigeration), Primus instituted ammonia-specific safety protocols, including ammonia sensors to detect leaks and a shutdown plan.

Bill Mummey, corporate facilities director of Dot Foods, credits Primus’ work for completing the project on time and on budget.

“This project had an aggressive schedule, and Primus took full advantage of the design-build delivery method to complete it on time,” he says.