h digitalfootprint web 728x90

Food Bank of Iowa to expand its distribution center as need rises


Brian Clark, director of real estate development for Ryan Cos.; Julie Stewart, Prairie Meadows vice president of community relations; Hannah Krause, Food Bank of Iowa board chair; and Michelle Book, Food Bank of Iowa CEO, toss shovels of dirt at a groundbreaking ceremony for the expansion of the Food Bank’s distribution center on Tuesday. Photo submitted by Food Bank of Iowa

Food Bank of Iowa will add 30,000 square feet to its distribution center in Des Moines to keep up with the need as food insecurity escalates.

The expansion, the first since the food bank moved to its current location on East 17th Street in 1999, will increase its food storage capacity by 50%, allowing it to accept more donations, purchase more food and improve efficiency. Its current building, a former beer distributorship, is 50,000 square feet.

Food Bank of Iowa celebrated the planned expansion with a groundbreaking ceremony Tuesday afternoon.

The current distribution center was remodeled in 2018 to triple storage capacity without adding square feet.

According to a news release, the addition will add more than 12,500 square feet of freezer space, nearly 16,000 square feet of dry storage, a loading dock, office space to the inventory room, and parking lot and dock area improvements and associated site work.

Food Bank of Iowa was awarded a $250,000 Legacy Grant from Prairie Meadows to help support the $11 million project. The donation will be recognized with new dock signs and on a donor wall.

The project is expected to be complete by June 2023. It will be funded with budget reserves and donations.

Michelle Book, food bank president and CEO, said the organization can no longer operate with cramped space and unreliable off-site storage.

“Food Bank of Iowa is out of room,” Book said.

The organization is distributing 1.5 million pounds of food each month to 700 pantries and feeding sites. Book said she anticipates that to grow to 2 million pounds a month within the next two years.

Food Bank of Iowa serves a 55-county area. It served a record 135,300 individuals and more than 48,200 households in June, the highest number in its 40-year history. The previous record was in May when it served 121,714 people.

Ryan Cos. is the general contractor on the project. RDG Planning and Design is the project’s architect.

Facebook Notice for EU! You need to login to view and post FB Comments!

raymondjames brd 020623 300x250