Gold Award
General Contractor

Projects of Distinction


Vortex Cold Storage


WDS Construction


Albert Lea, MN


Vortex Cold Storage


EXCEL Engineering Inc.

About the Project

The first state-of-the-art Vortex Cold Storage facility was built on time and under budget even through tornadic weather events, the COVID-19 pandemic, major bar joist and roofing shortages, and the sudden need by the owner to compress the schedule. The owner’s vision was to provide a one-of-a-kind cold storage facility with multiple temperature storage cells, value added customer services, relaxing trucker waiting lounges, rapid unloading/loading dock areas, and Safe Quality Food (SQF) certification, which came upon completion of the first phase on Feb 1, 2022. The facility accommodates the Vortex corporate offices and provides high-quality employee amenities along with increased virtual services, such as unmanned trucker check-in stations. The owner’s sense of planning for sustainability was incorporated with CO2 refrigeration, LED lighting, roof structures designed for future solar, and more. The second phase of the facility opened May 18, 2022, the same time the facility received its first PACE Equity Funding Award, based on energy-efficient construction. It’s the first cold storage facility to receive the award.

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