Schier Products, a manufacturer of grease interceptors for commercial kitchens, was searching for a new home in Shawnee, Kansas surrounded by ample natural area for a park-like setting. GBA partnered with Schier Products to assist in site selection, architecture, interior design and construction administration services. This led to a new 52,500-SF facility that would house both manufacturing and office functions on a heavily wooded, 30-acre property.
“Our team partnered with Schier Products early on in the process,” said Molly Oller, GBA Architect Project Leader. “They are proud of their products and wanted the same commitment to quality reflected in a new facility.”
It was essential to integrate Schier Products’ company culture into the facility design. The family-owned business wanted to create a space where employees could gather during and after the workday. GBA Project Architect, Jacob Vestal, worked closely with the owner to incorporate these requirements into the design. The break room, which has the potential to host everything from training classes to ping-pong tournaments, showcases this. Glass overhead doors line the room and open to a wide, wrap-around, covered porch. Tiered outdoor seating off the porch provides another space to congregate and socialize. The seating area transitions to a lawn that is further defined by cast-in-place planter boxes.
The indoor break room centers around a large bar that evokes a modern restaurant. The room leads to a wide wrap-around porch that provides room to gather under prefinished metal-panel canopies. Concrete pavers framed by cast-in-place planter boxes with a wood formliner define the outdoor space.
It was also important to have a building that would be as durable as the goods produced inside. From its people to its product, Schier Products is built to last, and the new facility needed to reflect that. Schier Products was looking for a simple, honest, industrial aesthetic. The structure of the building would highlight this aesthetic with:
- Fully insulated tilt-up concrete wall panels with bright white paint for a modern, minimalist feel. The interior of the panels is left unfinished to showcase the construction lift points.
- Exposed raw concrete and steel roof framing in the office to create the spartan aesthetic the client wanted, similar to the warehouse and production spaces.
- Spaces left open to the structure and clerestory windows to bring in natural light to both the manufacturing and open-office spaces.
- Horizontal formliner reveals between the office windows to add texture and frame the large clerestory windows above.
When creating these design elements, GBA kept in mind that Schier Products needed a facility that could take the company into the future. To allow for growth, GBA created a series of large knockout panels in the expansion wall that are designed to open the existing building up to the future expansion. This will maintain the wall’s structural integrity while creating continuity between the expansion and the original structure.
GBA has a long history of balancing a client’s wants with a budget. The team utilized its expansive industrial experience and partnership with the general contractor to assist them in providing continuous construction cost estimates. Clear communication and a focus on teamwork were key when maintaining the client’s budget.
“The client invested the time to communicate their vision, which made the project successful,” said Vestal. “It was rewarding to bring this to life in what is not just another run-of-the-mill industrial building.”
The 52,500-SF final design breaks down into 8,000 SF of office and 44,500 SF of warehouse/production space. The site will accommodate future expansions of up to 225,000 SF, ensuring the company can remain in its new home for years to come.