JMWilliams’ Industrial Division recently completed a project for Piolax Corporation. We interviewed Division Manager Andrew Wright to learn more about the challenges and insights gained from the completion of this unique expansion.
What kind of company is Piolax, and why did they need new construction/expansion of their facility?
Piolax is a Tier 1 supplier to multiple auto manufacturers. They make parts through various processes with an emphasis on plastics injection molding. The new facility will streamline their storage and distribution processes serving their existing manufacturing operations and also allow additional space to house manufacturing and assembly equipment.
What did you learn from working on this project? How was it different (or more difficult) from other projects you’ve worked on in the past? What challenges were presented?
This project presented a number of challenges but the ones that jump out immediately were the site constraints and the coordination with a very advanced and complex automated racking system.
The footprint of the new facility took up almost all of the available space on site leaving limited room to conduct construction operations and even less room for lay down and storage of materials. This complication required detailed sequencing of work activities and deliveries and was exacerbated by a particularly bad year of weather during the key phases of construction.
The racking system required detailed coordination with teams on three different continents, and our onsite team had to maintain an extremely tight schedule to ensure that the building was ready when the various components of the system were delivered. The rack system is fully automated, contains over 5000 storage bays and stands over 70 feet tall. Close coordination with the structural and MEP trades was a must.
Is there anything else about this specific project that would be of interest to the public?
An interesting fact is that Piolax manufactures and distributes over 1 billion parts from this facility each year, and this new facility will allow them to streamline their processes and grow their business even more.
What knowledge, gained from completing this project, could help or inform others in the industrial construction industry?
The Piolax project was a great opportunity to gain exposure to a niche sector of the industrial marketplace. It is a big step forward for us to have involvement in a cutting edge facility like this and will allow us to provide construction services to a wider range of customers who have similar specialized needs.