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Laundry will bring 89 jobs; set new low for water use

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POSTED April 10, 2013 2:04 a.m.

Crothall Healthcare wants to build a 60,150-square-foot laundry facility in Manteca.

But this isn’t your father’s laundry.

The cutting edge complex planned for North Airport Way west of Del Webb at Woodbridge will use only 0.7 gallons of water per pound of laundry. That could easily qualify as the most miserly water use for an industrial laundry in California. Typically, laundries on the scale as the one the firm proposes in Manteca would consume 2.5 to 3 gallons per pound of laundry.

The project approved by the Manteca Planning Commission on Tuesday would bring 89 jobs to Manteca with all but one or two at the most being local hires. CenterPoint Properties doesn’t have a final deal with Crothall yet as it is dependent on the project passing through all the city approval hoops first.

And it won’t be your typical tilt up industrial building either. It will have architectural treatments on the roofline and east facing elevations to avoid the big box look. It will also employ stepped up landscaping standards established in the Northwest Manteca development plan.

There will be three rows of trees lining Airport Way plus another row of trees next to the building. The idea is to provide intense screening with foliage so neighbors along Airport Way in Woodbridge at Del Webb and future housing developments would be hard pressed to tell there is a business park across the way.

One Del Webb resident - Louie Tallerico - told the commission he was impressed with the efforts being made with development standards to safeguard residential lifestyles adding he was looking forward to being neighbors with the proposed laundry.

Ian Bigelow, National Director of Engineering for Crothall Laundry Services, noted the firm could eventually establish as many as three laundry facilities in the Northern California market. Some 98 percent of the 85 million pounds of laundry and linen the company handles annually nationwide at 50 plants is for healthcare clients. The remaining clients are in the hospitality industry.

Bigelow said Crothall looked at other locations including San Jose, Pittsburg, San Leandro, and Stockton before opting for Manteca. While he said location was a factor, what tipped the decision was how willing city officials were to work with them to move the project forward.

“Stockton was a close second but their financial situation made it difficult for them (to work with prospective employers),” Bigelow said.

CenterPoint Vice President for Development Jeremy Gray noted they are getting ready to move forward with infrastructure on the intermodal business park portion of their project.

The Crothall proposal is not part of the nearby 190-acre CenterPoint Business Park located directly east of the Union Pacific Railroad intermodal truck to train facility that is accessed from Roth Road. The project ultimately will reflect a $175 million investment that could yield upwards of 600 permanent jobs in Manteca.

Some 3.1 million square feet of logistics/distribution space will be built. There are four structures planned ranging from 132,778 square feet to 1,491,718 square feet. The biggest distribution center in Manteca today is Ford Motor Small Parts Distribution Center at 550,000 square feet in Spreckels Park.

Users are expected to have large logistics and distributor needs that require tearing down products and either repackaging or reassembling and then prepare them for distribution. The project will have direct access to the UP yard to significantly reduce the potential impact for truck traffic.

The laundry will sit on five acres that are part of 39 acres that CenterPoint owns on the west side of Airport way immediately south of Daisywood Avenue.

The Crothall operation is designed to be LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environment Design) certified. It is awarded by the United States Green Building Council to encourage energy efficient and environmental friendly new constriction and remodeling efforts.

The senior housing complex off of North Grant Avenue behind Dribbles Car Wash was Manteca’s first certified private sector LEED building. Besides acknowledgment for incorporating green practices in the design, buildings that are LEED certified cost less to operate.

The major reduction in water use is one factor that will allow the building to be LEED certified. So is the fact they are installing the first bus turnout in Manteca along Airport Way.

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