The Central Pennsylvania Food Bank saw construction of its 31,000-square-foot expansion project completed Wednesday.
The largest addition, a 28,000-square-foot warehouse, gives the nonprofit a “greater capacity for food distribution,” said Kendall Hanna, the food bank’s executive director.
A news release from the JEM Group, the Harrisburg-based construction company responsible for the $3.5 million project, listed several upgrades that were added, such as a demonstration kitchen, office space and electrical improvements. Jessica Meyers, the company’s president, said construction continued while the facility was operational.
The 500-square-foot demonstration kitchen will be used for “nutrition-education and food-safety purposes,” Hanna said. “We might bring in school-age kids and teach them proper nutrition.”
“That’s nine months, so it’s almost like we were giving birth to a new food bank,” Hanna said. “It’s very satisfying to complete this project at this point in time.”
During the process, Hanna mentioned, multiple challenges occurred – such as dealing with the effects of last fall’s Tropical Storm Lee and working around 10 to 20 subcontractors in the warehouse – but did not interrupt operations or have a negative effect on donations.
“My warehouse staff is to be complimented for their flexibility during that period and in working with the JEM Group,” he said.