In 2014, Atwood’s existing facility was devasted by a fire that destroyed their main building. Atwood brought in Ausenco as a consultant and their mandate was to design a new non-combustible, efficient, state-of-the-art facility that would re-establish and expand Atwood’s current business plan. The owners of Atwood relied on the recommendation of Ausenco to bring in an experienced, competent contractor that could handle the fast track process that this build would most definitely require. Ball Construction started construction May 19, 2015.
Atwood was in the pet food market but were forced to abandon this process due to Mad Cow Disease. This time they focused on renewable energy markets. The building and all its components including mechanical and electrical were designed to accommodate Atwood’s new direction and business model.
Due to the potential for odor creation based on the function of the building, a biofilter odor removal system was also implemented into the design. This system can remove approximately 18.9 cubic meters per second of air from the raw materials, rendering and tallow storage areas, water process room etc. and drawn into an open air biofilter for treatment.
Incorporating their existing equipment and cookers into the new process proved to be a challenge as they now render the carcass material for volume reduction purposes and capture the fat for marketing to biodiesel refineries. The gasification plant equipment we were tying into is also fueled by Specified Risk Material (SRM) crax that is a byproduct of the volume reduction process.
Also, the SRM crax fuel displaced the need for natural gas that was used to heat the clients rendering cookers as well as the building and hot water supply.
Maintaining the schedule proved to be a challenge as well. This was a fast tracked project with an inflexible schedule due to insurance coverage.
The facility had an excessive surplus of heat that we were able to incorporate in-floor hydronic heating throughout the facility as well as its outside concrete walks, ramps and dolly pads. These systems are capable of running full-time, all year round without exhausting the supply.
To meet the schedule demands, Ball Construction made many value engineering suggestions during the pre-construction phase. Ball Construction priced and self-performed the concrete footings, foundations, extensive pits and concrete push walls required for the client processes. This enabled us to control the schedule ensuring we came out of the ground in time for steel and precast installations.
We were successful in completing the job on time and on budget.