By Cliff Quick, Director of Inside Sales and Project Management, G.A. Braun Inc.
In Part 1 of Laundry Facility Design for Optimal Processing Efficiency, Cliff Quick, Director of Inside Sales and Project Management at G.A. Braun discusses how to design a cost-efficient greenfield operational environment for your laundry and how to overcome common challenges faced when expanding or redesigning a laundry. Read Part 1 here. This week, Quick looks at important criteria to addressed when designing and building a new facility. Today and tomorrow…
When designing a new facility, a number of criteria should be taken into consideration for a successful outcome. It is vital to understand the process flow of a facility so equipment is placed in a configuration that optimizes material handling while allowing ample space for projected future expansion. An institutional laundry facility is no place for experimentation or guesswork. Not only has the Braun team accumulated decades of proactive experience, they’ve also embraced and shared the most innovative design tools and techniques. The use and knowledge of AutoCAD drawings and Building Information Modeling (BIM), plus other revolutionary approaches, will bring to life accurate build-outs of the proposed facility, supporting informed decisions about materials, capital expenditures and infrastructure – before the first shovel hits the ground.
THINGS TO CONSIDER
Ceiling heights will need to be designed & specified with adequate above finished floor (AFF) clearance to accommodate monorail systems. Utility systems (electrical & mechanical) need to be provided for all necessary equipment and incorporate future growth needs in the design process. Chemicals, linen storage, loading docks, office space, maintenance areas (for equipment as well as fleet), employee locker rooms and rest rooms should also be taken into consideration with ample space provided. Parking and exterior access to the building for deliveries and material off-loading are often overlooked. This includes the routing and staging of various route trucks and large bulk transport vehicles on the facility property.
Customers are often looking for a solution to address their inability to meet production goals. Often they simply want to add equipment to address this need. This may not always be the appropriate approach. Workflow may not be the first thing on a launderer’s mind, but it may be the answer to address their inabilities to meet goals. Analyzing the flow of goods in and out of a laundry plant, reviewing the production metrics and determining the equipment needed, along with incorporating material handling systems may be the best solution operationally, and this will undoubtedly be the best solution financially.
Increasing the automation level of an existing laundry facility certainly improves plant throughput. There has been an increase in customer interest to include more material handling with conveyors and monorail systems to reduce the amount of carts; FTEs & non-value-adding handling. Braun has been partnering with third-party rail providers for more than 25 years for automated loading of batch tunnel washers and conventional washers. It is important to consider and review the potential to incorporate material handling solutions for clean goods which includes rail routing & staging to finished goods areas for flatwork & small piece processing.
These types of project submittals are key given the analytical details incorporated with the presentation materials so that the business owner can make important strategic decisions. It is also important to note that in most cases, many improvements are not completely captured in the ROI calculations. These include: increased wash and finishing goods quality; better employee ergonomics; reduction in chemistry and potential reductions in linen replacement costs.
CHOOSING AN EQUIPMENT PROVIDER
When you are choosing an equipment provider, your project will move smoother if the provider has the contacts and working relationship with suppliers from all aspects of your project build. Braun has the ability to partner with multiple 3rd party contractors ranging from general contracting companies to rail providers and process pipers to provide complete turn-key laundry projects.
Consider also that laundry re-tools require minimal machine downtime and extremely tight schedules. Through the use of tracking tools and the selection of qualified 3rd party partners, Braun has a proven track record of successfully executing these types and other types of projects – from single-point solution installations to on-premise facility projects, new construction of complete laundry plants and multiple system (BTW and Open Pocket) automated plants. Braun completes more than 150 projects annually in high-profile facilities across each market segments in the laundry industry.
If you select Braun as your equipment provider, our Project Management Team would work very closely with the laundry team in determining and completing the final scope of work for the project. Once the scope of work has been finalized, the Project Manager is responsible for the equipment layout drawings, foundation/trench detail drawings, equipment utility schedules, rigging plans, equipment installation details for MEP and any further submittal documentation required. Additionally, our Project Manager would interface directly with the retained architects, electrical and mechanical contractors, installation/rigging contractors and utility systems engineers throughout the lifecycle of the project.
Our goal is to complete value adding projects on-time and on budget, safely and in line with the goals and expectations of our client partners. A successful project – with positive impact on the bottom line – demands strong partnerships with leading brands who provide meaningful support. For example, G.A. Braun is a time-tested laundry equipment manufacturer known for both world-class systems and stellar working relationships.
Contact Braun at (800) 432-7286 for more information
Or, visit their web site: BRAUN