In 2020, HPM was presented with the opportunity to represent Buffalo Rock in the construction of their brand-new North Alabama distribution center in Huntsville. Eager to further expand upon our food and beverage portfolio, we accepted the task at hand, and embarked on a two-year project with Buffalo Rock.
Early conversations revealed that the space would occupy roughly 204,000 gross square feet and would demand the capability for future expansion, as the facility would be a consolidation of what was previously two separate buildings. Matthew Dent, CEO and President of Buffalo Rock cast a vision on behalf of the company, stating “As our business grows and expands, we need a facility that could outpace us.” Dent went on to explain that this facility would have distribution impact from the state line of Mississippi to the Tennessee state line and would include the majority of the Northern and Northeastern regions of Alabama.
With the client’s needs at the forefront of their minds, HPM’s preconstruction team began assisting Buffalo Rock in their search for the ideal location to house the facility. As sites were explored, HPM expedited due-diligence and design efforts to ensure the project stayed on target for the established completion date. In due time, 55 acres of land were purchased, allowing space to accommodate 34 loading docks and 89 parking spaces for trucks and trailers and the desired square footage. Ground was broken on December 17, 2020, and construction promptly began.
While monitoring progression on the job site, HPM also ensured the project owner was regularly updated at internal leadership meetings, providing them peace of mind through thorough and transparent communication. Additionally, HPM conducted regular meetings with the City of Huntsville and adjacent projects to coordinate shared roadways, utilities and infrastructure in order to build good rapport with the community. Dent spoke to the company’s emphasis on community engagement, sharing “It’s important to Buffalo Rock that we invest in every community in which we operate. As we make investments across the Buffalo Rock footprint, the project here in Huntsville is a great example of our model—we build first class projects that not only we are proud of, but that the community can take pride in as long-term jobs are created for city residents”.
Unique challenges always accompany unprecedented growth, however HPM was at the side of Buffalo Rock’s leadership team every step of the way. During the site-work portion of the construction phase, an abnormal amount of groundwater was found, contrary to what was shown on the Geotech exploration, due to heavy rainfall. Because of HPM’s expertise in navigating complex projects with successful solutions, water mitigation efforts were enacted, enabling the team to remain on schedule.
Throughout the lifecycle of the project, HPM consistently led in cost reduction and optimization of time management, enabling the facility to achieve completion on July 14, 2022—ahead of schedule and within budget. Dent described HPM’s leadership on the project stating “When we first met with HPM, there was obviously a whole menu of services we could select. We selected the entire menu, which took us from site selection all the way through the completion and delivery of the final product. HPM has been in the driver’s seat from the get-go on this project, and it has been very successful”.
HPM values the trusted relationship we share with Buffalo Rock and looks forward to the continued growth that is to come.