• Image: Coca Cola

Distribution & Link Building for Coca Cola

In 2014, as part of a major investment programme, Coca-Cola European Partners (CCEP) embarked on procuring a brand new £39m Automated Storage and Retrieval System (ASRS) warehouse at its Sidcup production facility, Kent.

CCEP Sidcup has seven manufacturing lines producing more than 42 million cases of soft drinks every year, with a fill-rate of 5,000 bottles and cans every minute. Such volumes meant the existing production facility had to undergo a considerable amount of internal pallet movements, transporting product off the lines, into and around the warehouse, before loading it on to delivery vehicles.

A lack of overspill space also required use of off-site warehousing, adding to the amount of double-handling, articulated vehicle movements on and off site as well as cost. Once completed, the ASRS warehouse will significantly reduce the need for external warehousing, meaning fewer pallet movements between product coming off the line for delivery direct to customers through 18 new loading bays.

Following a successful competitive tender process, Feilden+Mawson were formally engaged by Chalcroft Construction as Architects for the design and build of the Link and Despatch buildings as well as a new delivery bay canopy and HV Switchroom. A separate contract was entered into between CCEP and Consoveyo for the design and build of the ASRS cladrack structure and fabric as well as the material handling equipment (MHE) systems. The MHE works requiring modifications to existing production lines and reconnecting same to new conveyor routes through to the ASRS.

Designed to hold and automatically move 25,000 pallets, the ASRS facility triples the existing storage capacity of the site allowing all manufactured products to be delivered to customers directly, saving approximately 10,817HGV road miles and 3,867 tonnes of CO2 a year.

The project involved extensive coordination between the design teams of Chalcroft and Consoveyo for the integration of the MHE and ASRS requirements into the building works. Demolition and construction operations had to be carried out in a phased manner to facilitate 24/7 vehicle movements while accommodating an extensive archaeological investigation upon discovery of significant Mesolithic and Roman artefacts.

Feilden+Mawson also provided services directly to CCEP to obtain Building Regulation approval for the ASRS and MHE works by Consoveyo.

The ASRS is programmed to be fully operational in Autumn 2018.