Alliance Architects is currently designing the majority of the new big-box industrial projects in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. And today’s boxes are bigger than ever. Big-box design in the Dallas/Fort Worth area has evolved into projects in excess of 1 million square feet with up to 36-foot clear heights and high-end amenity packages.
For example, the firm’s recent developments include three ground-up big-box facilities in Texas: a 1.4 million square-foot distribution facility for Proctor & Gamble south of Dallas; an 850,000 square-foot property for Restoration Hardware in Grand Prairie, Texas; and a 600,000-square-foot facility for L’Oreal USA in Dallas.
The ever-increasing space needs of clients can pose a challenge for architects. In instances where client requirements approach the 2 million-square-foot mark, we often find that two individual 1 million-square-foot buildings with a shared truck court are more efficient and avoid possible life safety problems inherent with larger, single-building facilities.
Along with larger footprints, users are looking for more than simple shade-and-shelter warehouses. Some operators require complex systems of material handling, energy efficiency and environmental quality. With regard to the L’Oreal USA project, Alliance Architects met the client’s requirements by designing a LEED Silver-certified facility that also includes a storm water treatment center, spill containment, a true tornado shelter for employees and a heated warehouse for comfort during the winter months.
With distribution facilities, a larger footprint is not the only way that developers and clients get the most out of a space.
Distribution is more about cubic footage than square footage, especially when constrained by site restrictions, equipment performance and life safety requirements.
With regard to the Restoration Hardware project, the company wanted to maximize storage space on a smaller site. The site was particularly attractive to Restoration Hardware because of location, visibility, and tax incentives. To meet the client’s requirements, Alliance Architects designed an 850,000-square-foot facility with 38-foot clear height, which maximized the facility’s cubic footage. The original requirement was just over 1 million square feet of the then standard 32’ clear height. Each project is uniquely designed and developed to overcome any and all obstacles from the onset, addressing tax implications, environmental issues, topography, utilities and zoning.