Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank

Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank

Although the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank serves a local population, it enjoys the reputation as one of the most progressive and well-run food distribution organizations in the country. Members of the evolveEA team had the privilege of assisting the food bank in the design and construction of one of the first 10 LEED certified buildings in the US back in 1999. The original brownfield site was a former steel mill, and the project was one of the first in the country to be recognized by the AIA Committee On The Environment as a COTE Top Ten green building.

Having maintained a relationship with the Food Bank over two decades, evolveEA has been engaged a number of times to help the organization plan and renovate parts of its massive facility to meet their changing needs. We’ve helped the Food Bank think strategically about how sustainability could influence their supply chain and facilities to improve their core service of food delivery. One of the first projects, the End Hunger Now offices, was an investment in corporate culture that streamlined and improved the warehouse, expanded their office area, and did so without an additional building.

evolveEA’s strategic planning process in 2010 benchmarked the Food Bank’s operational requirements, established a vision for growth, and set priorities with a process for implementation. Beginning with the question, “What would you change to deliver more food to more people?”, we helped the Food Bank find operational and facilities solutions that went beyond an initial expectation of expansion. Through analysis of material logistics, equipment upgrades, and space utilization cycles we helped them identify past patterns and anticipate future trends.

The Food Bank has continued to grow and serve more people, and in 2019 evolveEA facilitated a sustainability goal setting and visioning charrette that is guiding a major investment in their facilities and in serving the local community. A project to establish the facility as a Community Resiliency Hub is under construction and evolveEA is providing LEED Certification management as part of the design team. The renovated building will add 30,000 SF of office space with updates to improve building performance and target a new LEED v4 standard. The expanded facility will create more cooler space specifically to house fresh produce. Their goal is to make 50% of all the food distributed from the food bank fresh produce by 2025.

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