BCB Development has broken ground on the first cold storage industrial speculative building in the Kansas City market, according to KC SmartPort. The Class A, 167,575-square-foot facility will be located in the Heartland Meadows Industrial Park in Liberty, Mo.

The new facility will include a fully insulated building, enhanced roof loads, and specialized floor slabs to maintain refrigeration and freezer temperatures required for cold storage properties. Additionally, it will be customizable to specific tenant needs and has the capability to be divisible for multiple tenants if needed. BCB Development anticipates the building’s delivery in the first quarter of 2022.

“BCB Development is very excited to bring the first speculative new construction cold storage building to the Kansas City market. We believe we are ahead of the curve to meet the burgeoning demand of the cold storage market segment as more goods are shipped that require cold/freezer-type storage and distribution,” said Brandon Becker with BCB Development. “Liberty, Mo., a suburb of Kansas City, is ideally located to capitalize on Kansas City’s central location, its existing transit infrastructure, and its reputation as a national distribution hub city. This will allow us to attract national tenants looking for a Class A state-of-the-art facility that can reach a majority of the U.S. within one day.”

The Kansas City region’s $125.4 billion food and beverage industry continues to see growth with more than 670 companies located in the area and a workforce of more than 25,500 employed in food and beverage manufacturing, warehousing and distribution. As food trends continue to rapidly change and speed-to-market becomes increasingly critical, the Kansas City region has emerged as one of the largest and fastest-growing food and beverage logistics hubs in the U.S.

In the last two years, the Kansas City region has successfully attracted food and beverage companies pledging to create more than 1,800 jobs, invest over $486 million, and occupy nearly 4.2 million square feet, according to KC SmartPort, a nonprofit economic development organization affiliated with KCADC that works to attract freight-based companies to the KC region.

“The demand for cold storage space and refrigerated transportation is significant and on the rise, fueled by shifts in consumer preferences, demand for fresh product, food transparency and changes to consumer shopping habits, among other factors,” said Elli Bowen, vice president of KC SmartPort. “The demand for food delivery continues to drive distribution and fulfillment facility location decisions. Kansas City’s centralized location, low operating costs and infrastructure network, coupled with available spec space, further positions the KC region as a hub for food and beverage operations.”

ARCO National Construction will serve as the general contractor for the project with John Stafford, Turner Wisehart and Chris Cummins with Colliers International serving as the brokers for the facility.