Friday, January 24, 2014

Seattle's Best Coffee Turns to Modular for New Stores

When Seattle's Best Coffee wanted to deliver 10 new drive-thru stores in Texas – all on the same day – they turned to modular construction.

"With this new concept, Seattle’s Best Coffee was able to bring great tasting coffee to Dallas-Fort Worth with ground-breaking speed and efficiency. Opening 10 stores in one day in the same market allowed us to make a great impact in the Dallas-Fort Worth market," said Larry Metzelaar, store development manager for Seattle's Best Coffee.

Manufactured by the Texas-based Palomar Modular Buildings, the stores are 500 square feet each, roughly the size of a one-bedroom apartment. They feature drive-thru and walk-up windows, catering to the fast-paced lifestyle of customers who may not take the time to sit in a café.

Seattle’s Best, a subsidiary of Starbucks, began working on the concept in the spring of 2012. Once the design was engineered and the manufacturer chosen, the stores took about 40 days to complete, including fabrication, shipping and installation. Installs began in late March 2013 and finished in early May, allowing for training time before opening day on May 20, Metzelaar said.

He attributes the efficiency of the process to the decision to go with modular. "Modular was chosen for speed of production, cost in leveraging multiple units of the same specification, the ability to have units built and held as inventory for when the sites were ready, and consistency of quality control due to the factory production techniques," Metzelaar said.

An added bonus was minimal construction waste since the stores were built under controlled factory conditions, which contributed to a more sustainable building process, he said.

Now that Seattle’s Best has incorporated modular construction into their business plan with solid success, they see it as an option for future franchises. "Because of the scalability of modular building, we will continue to consider it one of our viable options for future projects," Metzelaar said.

To learn more about the project, please visit the Palomar website.

From MBI

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