Freestore Foodbank – Community Resource & Distribution Center

Building Architecture- Large Scale (>10,000 sf)

Project Narrative

The design firm partnered with a local construction company to design and build a new distribution center and workforce training center for Freestore Foodbank. The facility provides modern storage and infrastructure to increase distribution capacity, expand refrigeration space for fresh food, and improve freezer storage. The 225,000-square-foot facility is a project several years in the making.

This project had a multifaceted objective that began with careful consideration of the location. The deliberate selection of the Sedamsville/Delhi area was driven by a strong commitment to stimulating the local economy and generating employment opportunities. Being only 3.5 miles from Downtown Cincinnati, Freestore Foodbank is enabled like never before to support a greater number of families across their expansive 20-county service area.

The project's impact and success were shaped by more than just the location. As Freestore Foodbank continues to strive towards efforts to create healthier meals, it was of paramount importance that the facility was equipped with ample refrigeration and freezer capacity. This added storage space ensures a consistent availability of fresh foods for all those benefiting from the organization's generosity.

Beyond its role as the main distribution center, the facility incorporates dedicated areas for hands-on training and classroom space to enhance the Freestore Foodbank’s workforce training initiatives. There is adequate space for volunteers to do their work, a warehouse to teach students in the Lift the TriState program, and a full-service, state-of-the-art commercial kitchen to facilitate training and meal preparation for those enrolled in the Cincinnati Cooks! program. Freestore Foodbank has an impact well beyond its physical location. It was essential to provide a design that nurtures its positive influence in the surrounding community.

Thoughtful design continues to be reflected in the availability of safe parking spaces, easily accessible loading areas for truck operations, and offices that feel like home. Consolidating three of four Freestore Foodbank locations, it was imperative to create a comfortable and inviting workspace for staff. We approached this goal with mindfulness and meticulous attention to detail.

Freestore Foodbank is the region's largest emergency food provider to families, supporting over 600 food banks and pantries. With the new facility more than doubling the size of the previous distribution site, Freestore Foodbank leaders believe that this expansion will give their team the ability to go from serving 50 million meals a year to serving 100 million meals a year. With every step of the design and construction process, we were committed to using our expertise to ensure that this new facility catered to every requirement that fosters such remarkable achievements.


Project Details

Submission Category

Building Architecture- Large Scale (>10,000 sf)

Date of Completion

June, 2023