Dollar General ‘fresh’ distribution center on Rt 5S approved, warehouse planned opposite existing dry goods facility

Dollar General sign


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TOWN OF FLORIDA — Dollar General’s plans to construct a new cold storage distribution center across the street from its existing dry goods warehouse on Route 5S were approved by the town of Florida Planning Board on Monday.

The Planning Board approved the project on the condition that hydraulic loading dock lifts be installed to cut operational noise, shields be installed on outdoor lights to prevent intrusion on other properties and pressure washing of homes coated with dirt or dust from construction be provided.

Dollar General cleaned construction grime left behind on the exterior surfaces of homes after the completion of its initial distribution center in the town. Chairman Stephen Viele requested the company plan ahead this time to provide the same courtesy.

“So that residents feel happier, because that was a major concern. They don’t want to have to go through hoops to get it done, they’d rather know,” Viele said.

There were no objections to the conditions from Marcie Weslock, project engineer with Elan Design Group. She also noted plans are being worked out to reroute the existing trail used by the Town of Florida Snowmobile Club running across the 21-acre project site.

Plans are being developed to shift the trail onto adjacent land owned by the Montgomery County Industrial Development Agency, according to Viele, who is also president of the snowmobile club.

The Dollar General project site was carved out of what was originally 54-acres of vacant land owned by the MCIDA through a subdivision approved by the Planning Board in January.

The company estimated it will buy the 21-acre plot from the county for $420,000 in a payment in lieu of tax application for the new cold storage warehouse submitted to the MCIDA. The overall project is estimated to cost $35 million.

The 167,500-square-foot warehouse will feature a pair of coolers and a pair of freezers at varying temperatures handling produce, refrigerated goods and frozen items for distribution to existing and future Dollar General stores as part of the company’s “fresh initiative.”

The perishable goods distribution center could eventually serve about 1,200 stores throughout the region based on the initiative’s continued rollout and demand.

The new warehouse, with its own staff of around 125 employees, will operate independently from the existing 750,000-square-foot dry goods facility across the street.

Separate entrances for employees and tractor trailers will lead to the facility from an existing access road just east of the Vida Blend factory. The employee entrance will be secured with keycard technology. A guardhouse staffed 24/7 will be positioned at the truck entrance.

Employee parking will be installed to the west and truck parking to the east of the building, along with a fuel island and truck scale for internal use. Tractor-loading docks will be on the rear of the building.

Construction of the new warehouse is targeted for next year.

Reach Ashley Onyon at [email protected] or @AshleyOnyon on Twitter.

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