Americold, provider of temperature-controlled warehousing and logistics to the food industry, has broken ground for a new facility at its Rochelle IL campus, adding a 15.5-million-cubic-foot automated facility to its network and further increasing its global capacity.

The firm’s campus in Rochelle is currently home to two conventional warehouse facilities. This addition, being built on Americold-owned land, will bring another 57,600 pallet positions and extensive automation capabilities—boosting capacity for Americold’s customers in the Chicago market.

“Working with some of our key partners, we identified the opportunity to update and expand our campus just an hour east of Chicagoland, and to offer both automated and conventional storage and distribution options,” said Fred Boehler, president and CEO of Americold. “Our customers challenged us for a solution, and I’m proud that today marks the first day of making that solution a reality.”

The additional facility will be a 140-foot-high series of rooms, housing an automated storage and retrieval system attached to a conventional warehouse format for maximum flexibility as customer needs evolve. The combined campus footprint will amass more than 33.5 million cubic feet and contain more than 115,000 pallet positions—a significant offering for Americold’s Midwest customer base in the geographically advantaged Illinois location.

“Americold’s decision to expand in Rochelle is proof again that we are the ‘Midwest Hub’ for frozen food distribution; we appreciate their continued reinvestment in the city of Rochelle,” said Mayor Chet Olson.

The construction phase of the project has already begun with ground clearing. Once the structure is complete, Americold will hire up to 70 associates in full- and part-time positions.

“It is a game changer when a company integrates advanced technology into its operations. Rochelle is proud to be home to another one of Americold’s automatic storage and retrieval system distribution centers,” said Jason Anderson, economic development director for the city of Rochelle.

The facility is expected to open in December 2018.

Based in Atlanta GA, Americold owns and operates more than 165 temperature-controlled warehouses, with more than 1 billion cubic feet of storage, in the United States, Australia, New Zealand, China, Argentina and Canada. Its facilities connect food producers, processors, distributors and retailers to consumers. Americold serves more than 2,500 customers and employs 11,000 associates worldwide.

More information is provided at www.americold.com.