Lineage Logistics Constructs Most Advanced Cold Storage Facility in Eastern U.S.

$84 million investment will meet cold chain demand in the Port of Virginia.

February 16, 2022

In October 2021, Lineage Logistics celebrated the grand opening of their 167,264-square-foot cold storage facility in Portsmouth, Virginia, that will be used to import, export, process, and distribute a variety of food products across the region. With more than 26,000 rack locations and 50 refrigerator container plugs on site, the new facility will help meet the surge in demand for cold storage space and strengthen the Port of Virginia’s supply chain and logistics infrastructure.

Situated on the former BASF Corporation site, the cold storage facility’s strategic location along the Elizabeth River in Portsmouth gives Lineage Logistics access to global markets. The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked closely with the City of Portsmouth, the Hampton Roads Economic Development Alliance, and the Virginia Port Authority to secure the project for the State of Virginia, bringing more than 80 new jobs to the area and repositioning the former BASF site into productive use.

Aerial view of the Lineage Logistics industrial site adjacent to the Elizabeth River. Front entrance sign with the Lineage Logistics logo. Aerial view of the loading docks at the Lineage Logistics Portsmouth location.

VHB’s involvement with the site began in 2016 with due diligence, which enabled the owner to understand the value of the land and the infrastructure investments necessary to support landside and waterside uses. This included the development of shipping repair facilities, a new freezer distribution facility, a cross dock distribution warehouse, and a new deep-water marine terminal. VHB analyzed the site’s capacity and prepared a master development plan that included programming for several new facilities.

In 2019, Lineage Logistics purchased a portion of the parcel from property owners, Marathon Development. VHB worked alongside RKB Architects and Victory Unlimited Construction to prepare an early earthwork, erosion and sediment control, demolition, and stormwater package to facilitate an accelerated construction schedule. With the building’s location on the edge of the Elizabeth River, the facility was constructed four feet higher than existing grade to prevent the loading docks from flooding during major rainfall events and stalling the distribution of goods. In addition, VHB assisted the City of Portsmouth in securing a grant from the Virginia Department of Transportation to convert a paper street—a road that only existed on a map—to a public right-of-way that helped with access to the new cold storage facility. VHB’s strong relationships with local regulatory agencies and deep knowledge of the site was instrumental in expediting the permitting and advancing the design of the infrastructure to support operations.

“The opening of the Portsmouth facility is helping to meet a need for cold storage as the demand for transporting refrigerated goods continues to expand,” said Ken Rodman, Real Estate Market Leader for the Mid-Atlantic at VHB. “This facility will allow manufacturers to protect their investments and eliminate risk by having storage at the correct temperature, often contributing to a longer product shelf life.”

Lineage Logistics has the largest temperature-controlled facility network globally with nearly a billion cubic feet of freezer and cooler capacity, across 400+ facilities and 15 countries. The company maintains inland and port locations and is focused on servicing large and small retailers and food producers worldwide with their supply chain needs.

VHB has been instrumental in assisting developers and end users advance industrial developments within the region, including PepsiCo’s distribution facility in Chesterfield County, Virginia, Bridgeway Commerce Center and Northgate Commerce Park in Suffolk, Virginia.

For more information about this project or VHBs industrial development experience, please contact VHB’s Real Estate Market Leader, Ken Rodman.