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story.lead_photo.caption Construction crews go in and out Monday at the site of the future Pinnacle Foods Inc. expansion at 1100 W. 15th St. in Fayetteville. The company will build a 164,000-square-foot frozen goods warehouse connected to its existing building. - Photo by Stacy Ryburn

FAYETTEVILLE -- A major food company will expand with environmental friendliness, sustainability, safety and economic viability in mind, representatives said Monday.

Pinnacle Foods at 1100 W. 15th St. will add a frozen goods warehouse to its facility, expanding about 164,000 square feet. The current 350,000-square-foot building was built in 1966 and sits on about 50 acres.

Planning Commission retreat

Commissioners will prioritize and discuss long-range planning topics, development code amendments, a work program for 2018 and possible revisions to commission bylaws.

When: 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday

Where: Conference Room, Municipal Airport, 4500 S. School Ave.

Source: Staff report

The Planning Commission approved the development plan for the expansion 7-0. City officials in an earlier news release touted the move as an economic and environmental boon.

Locating the warehouse with the manufacturing plant will eliminate more than 130,000 miles of tractor-trailer traffic from Interstate 49, according to the city's statement. Fayetteville's Sustainability Department said the reduction of miles on the highway equates to 21,452 gallons of fuel saved, which includes a reduction of 218 metric tons of carbon dioxide.

Three residents asked about environmental aspects of the project, including a nearby wetlands area and the impact the expansion could have on the community.

Bill Medley, senior environmental, health and safety manager of the facility, said the cold storage warehouse will require no increase in refrigerant. The company does its best to maintain the minimum amount necessary to do its job safely, he said.

Also, an on-site, state-certified hazards materials team is capable of dealing with any issues, Medley said.

"They're trained better than anyone else in the city of Fayetteville, I assure you," he said.

The company also will dedicate about 2 acres near the bicycle path through the property for preservation. Darrell Froud with Pinnacle said the company's three basic tenets are safety, the environment and economic viability.

The number of new jobs that the $30 million expansion will bring will be based on business needs when the facility opens in the fall, a Pinnacle spokeswoman said.

Pinnacle Foods Inc. is a manufacturer, marketer and distributor of branded food products including brands such as Birds Eye, Duncan Hines, Hungry-Man and Wish-Bone. The company is headquartered in Parsippany, N.J. and has nearly 5,000 employees across the U.S. and Canada.

In other business, the commission tabled a permit for a recreational vehicle resort that would sit within about 29 acres currently owned by J.B. and Michelle Duggar. The property sits adjacent to Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard near Hanshew Road. The resort would take up about 7 of those 29 acres.

The Reserve at Mount Kessler would feature 99 lots with power, water and sewer and WiFi capabilities. Amenities such as shuffle board, bocce ball, horseshoes, volleyball and access to nearby walking and biking trails, including the Razorback Greenway, also will be made available, according to a project proposal.

A clubhouse will feature an indoor meeting area, restrooms and showers on par with a lavish country club, the proposal states.

Three neighbors who spoke stressed concerns with large recreational vehicles trying to navigate Hanshew Road and noise. Planning commissioners asked the project's applicants to come back with a concrete plan showing where the areas of tree preservation would go.

The commission also approved a development plan for student housing just south of Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard east of Interstate 49. The Cottages at Hollywood will feature 664 beds and a clubhouse with amenities on about 43 acres. The intersection of Beechwood Avenue and 15th Street also will become a roundabout, per the plan.

NW News on 01/23/2018

Print Headline: Pinnacle Foods plans to expand

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