Private real estate developer Highland Fairview Properties recently selected Stantec as prime consultant for its $25 billion World Logistics Center (WLC) project in Moreno Valley, Calif.
Stantec provides consulting services in planning, engineering, architecture and other related disciplines.
Brianna Daniels, Stantec’s principal-in-charge on the project, says design began in April 2022.
“Grading activities are expected to begin in August 2023, with building permits and vertical construction set to begin in December 2023,” said Daniels. “Construction will continue with infrastructure and buildings. We’re aiming for project completion in 2031.”
When finished, the developers say, the WLC will be the largest planned logistics and business park in North America and a distribution center that will cover all of North America.
They also say the four-square-mile site will be the largest net-zero logistics hub in North America.
Daniels says logistics hubs are “large-scale structures and groupings of facilities that enable multiple service providers and distributors to distribute and ship goods and products in a more cost-effective, efficient and sustainable manner.”
“There are many logistics buildings in Southern California, but no logistics hubs like the World Logistics Center,” said Daniels. “It will increase delivery efficiency, reduce the number of truck trips and improve supply chain performance.”
When completed, the WLC will contain more than 40 million square feet of space for warehouses and business centers, as well as cafes, restaurants, day care facilities and public space, all of it connected by walkable streets and trails.
The WLC is located in the middle of southern California’s Golden Triangle, a region that comprises Los Angeles, Orange and San Diego counties and the Inland Empire (a region inland of and adjacent to coastal southern California).
“The World Logistics Center is located at the gateway for 40 per cent of American imports, and it is only a one-and-a-half-hour drive from the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach,” said Daniels. “It also has immediate access to three major interchanges, allowing the potential for one-day shipping to 11 western states.”
Stantec’s work at the WLC will focus on infrastructure that is sustainable and future-ready, meaning it is able to anticipate changes and challenges and plan for transitions and transformations in the labor force.
The engineering company will have much to do. Its contract includes civil engineering, industrial buildings architecture, geomatics, water and wastewater design, landscape architecture, urban planning, smart mobility and autonomous vehicle (AV) consulting, funding consulting and energy and innovation design.
The WLC will be efficient.
It will use SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition) systems to co-ordinate logistics companies that use the center.
SCADA enables the maximum number of trucks to leave the center fully-loaded because they’ll be carrying cargo from more than one shipper.
The developers say the result will be increased shipping efficiency, better use of transportation resources and reduced carbon emissions.
It will also be a friend of the environment.
Plans call for the WLC to be carbon-neutral, which would make it the largest sustainable logistics cluster in the U.S.
“Highland Fairview’s vision for a net-zero and sustainable economic center has not yet been tackled on this scale in the U.S.,” said Daniels.
Stantec will investigate opportunities for battery storage and micro-grids at the WLC so that it doesn’t have to rely on the external power grid.
Another priority is water conservation, which is a critical issue in California. The facility will be designed to reduce water use by 70 per cent compared to the rest of Moreno Valley.
The expected result will be savings of 653 million gallons of water per year, which is enough to slake the thirst of 27,000 households.
The developers of the WLC say it will make use of the latest mobility solutions in freight travel to and from the site and in passenger movement on it.
The facility will have 1,080 charging stations for electric freight and logistics vehicles, and employees’ and visitors’ electric automobiles.
Stantec GenerationAV, Stantec’s autonomous vehicle consulting arm, is looking at how to use AV technology on the site, because trucking is expected to be one of the first industries to take advantage of AV technology.
“The project aims to set a new standard for how logistics hubs are designed and built,” said Daniels. “It will approach logistics operations in a way that aligns with the highest standards of environmental and societal needs, while offering better shipping costs and speeds.
“We see the World Logistics Center as a game-changer for how logistics hubs are envisioned and planned, while reimagining the levels of sustainability these facilities can realistically attain.”