The view outside the Zone Mechanical ammonia-based (non-CO2) refrigerated warehouse for the meat wholesaler in Illinois.


A regional meat wholesaler / Chicago


To dramatically expand the existing and available warehouse freezer space to meet the needs of a rapidly growing business – without interruption.


Business is good. So good, in fact, that this regional meat wholesaler needed to double the capacity of the refrigerator and freezer space in its existing Zone Mechanical warehouse to handle more product. And adjacent vacant parking lot and structure was purchased, and over the next four months a new structure designed and engineered by Zone Mechanical would take shape.

Imagine building a gigantic refrigerator: part cooler, part freezer. Like any other structure, there’s a steel skeleton. But in between are insulated roofing and panels of varying thicknesses, depending on their use. Inside there are boilers and, hanging from the ceiling, evaporators, fans and drain lines. A huge chiller and the condensing units had to be airlifted to the roof via helicopter. And with no room for mechanical systems on the inside, a special house was built outside.

The key to the project was to not only build the new warehouse quickly, but to also not interfere with what already was going on at the existing operations. And, once operational, the transition to the new facility needed to be seamless, without the risk of losing a lot of product – in this case, meat – and money.

A key to the project was communication. Most of the meat arriving to the facility was frozen, but not all of it. For example, Zone Mechanical needed to know approximately how many pounds would be coming into the facility at 30 degrees (versus 0 to 5) Fahrenheit and plan accordingly.

And because the scope of work that was created by Zone Mechanical was so well prepared, all the trades had a good understanding of what needed to be done and by when. Equipment was delivered on time and installed per the schedule.


Having built the first warehouse for this customer, Zone Mechanical was uniquely positioned to complete this project on time. It was an efficient operation from start to finish, effectively planned with no hitches. As a result, there were no “extra” charges, and the customer was able to move into the new warehouse on time and on budget.

An interior view of the massive meat wholesaler freezer and refrigeration warehouse by Zone Mechanical

An interior view of the massive meat wholesaler freezer and refrigeration warehouse by Zone Mechanical.

We brought two things to the project that they really needed – expertise and execution. And they trusted us to do what we’ve always done for them … take care of all their refrigeration needs.

Frank Petrosino

CEO, Zone Mechanical

A crane positions equipment at a new Zone Mechanical warehouse