Preferred Freezer Services (PFS), headquartered in Chatham, New Jersey, USA, designs, constructs and operates state-of-the-art temperature-controlled warehouses throughout the United States and Asia.
In 2018 PFS opened its new 200,000 ft² facility in Kearny, New Jersey, to meet demand in the area for modern and efficient cold storage warehousing services. The Kearny site is their 9th facility in the state.
The main challenge was that the warehouse was to be constructed on a site with very poor soil. Menard, a Pittsburgh-based specialty geotechnical contractor offering expertise in ground improvement for sites with poor soil, was brought in to offer advice, along with Bekaert.
To improve the soil, Menard used their Controlled Modulus Column (CMC)® Rigid Inclusions combined with a thick load transfer platform made of compacted granular material. This improved the stiffness of the ground, transferring the load of the structure through the soft soils into a competent bearing layer.
Technical experts from Menard and Bekaert worked together to design a thinner load transfer platform. In addition, the use of Dramix® steel fiber reinforcement enabled a reduction in thickness of the concrete slabs as well as time and cost savings as no rebar had to be installed.