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Spotlight on Southwestern Illinois Commercial Construction

FedEx Ground Distribution Center, Sauget, Contegra Construction Co. LLC

p14 fedexThe FedEx Ground facility in Sauget Business Park.By KERRY SMITH
    Some 11,500 inbound and 10,000 outbound packages per hour are moving through FedEx Ground’s distribution center in Sauget, completed in January 2014 by Edwardsville-based Contegra Construction Co. LLC.  
    The 190,000-square-foot, $23.5 million facility, located on 35 acres in Sauget Business Park, is one of 17 FedEx Ground operations in Illinois.
    Contegra Project Manager Jason Prewitt said the project’s most formidable challenge was adapting to architectural, engineering and construction-specific changes that arose midway in the construction phase, which began in April 2013. The project represents tilt-up concrete construction, he said.
     “The biggest factor for us was coordination between the conveyors themselves and the rest of the building,” said Prewitt. Upon request from the client, Contegra successfully reconfigured electrical service for a network of high-tech package-sorting belts and parcel diverters, each of which were connected to bar code scanners. Prewitt said Contegra also redesigned the location of interior support columns within a tight timeline to keep the project on schedule and within budget.
    The building’s design accommodates up to 96 FedEx Ground delivery trucks.  One side of the facility is devoted to sorting, the other to loading, according to Prewitt.
     “A unique feature of this facility is that it is jam-packed with mezzanines,” he said.
    In the context of this project, according to Prewitt, the mezzanines, or “catwalks,” are low stories situated just above the main floor where the conveyor systems are operating.
    FedEx Ground also performed a significant amount of interior engineering related to its proprietary package-moving technology, according to Prewitt.
    The project developer was Sauget FXG LLC, a subsidiary of Jones Development Co. LLC. JDC is leasing the ground to FedEx Ground, according to Scott Burns, regional vice president of operations for FedEx Ground’s central region.