US – Heartland Coca-Cola Bottling Company, a Lenexa-based bottler, and distributor of Coca-Cola beverages across Kansas, Missouri, and Illinois, has received approval from Olathe Planning Commission to go ahead with its US$300m construction project.

In a revised preliminary plan and revised preliminary plat to construct to the commission, the company is planning to construct a 640,879-square-foot facility, followed by an additional 547,781 square feet in a second phase, at the southwest corner of 167th Street and Hedge Lane.

The facility will include four production lines, a warehouse, offices, testing areas, and pallet yards. Construction is anticipated to begin in April next year, and production lines are slated to open by the fourth quarter of 2024.

Kevin Shea, vice president of strategy, who called the facility “the new campus,” said it will speed up the production process and significantly expand Heartland’s production capabilities.

During the launch of the master plan for the project in October, Justin Bridgeman, Executive Director of Heartland Coca-Cola, said: “Our family made the intentional move to set the company up for the next generation. Coca-Cola has had a generational presence in Kansas City going back to when we were in the Western Auto building Downtown.

“Our mission has always focused on our people, which include employees, customers, and our communities. This move to Olathe sets us up to grow alongside the city as it expands and grows too.”

Until 2025, when the new campus would be running, production will continue to be undertaken in the current production facility in Lenexa, which was built in 1969 and sits northwest of the junction of interstates 35 and 435.

Once the operation starts on the campus, the company plans to transfer its Lenexa facility team of 175 employees there, Shea said.

Heartland has slightly more than 700 employees at its three Lenexa facilities: a distribution center, production facility/warehouse, and headquarters.

Coca-Cola inaugurates US$10.2m sales and distribution center in Tampa Bay area

Meanwhile, Coca-Cola has opened its US$10.2 million sales and distribution center off Gandy Boulevard in St. Petersburg, Tampa Bay area.

Construction of the new facility in the Tampa Bay area began in 2019 and was delayed by the pandemic, said the Coca-Cola Florida branch.

The 22,000-square-foot sales and distribution center is the first site built from scratch by Coke Florida, which was founded in 2015, employs 140 people, and caters to 3,500 customers in Pinellas County.

Coke Florida covers 47 counties in the state and 21 million consumers, with 18 sales and distribution centers and four manufacturing centers.

To complement the new facility’s capabilities, Coke Florida has also broken ground on a US$250 million sales and distribution center in Tampa that will be more than 800,000 square feet, located between the Selmon Expressway and Causeway Boulevard.

The company expects the construction to take between 24 and 36 months to build due to economic conditions.

Once it’s completed, the facility will house approximately 800 Tampa employees across sales, manufacturing, warehousing, distribution, fleet operations, and professional services.

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