Cold Storage Firm Builds New Warehouse in New Jersey

RLS Logistics is building a 56-foot-tall, 1.6 million-cubic-foot freezer warehouse at the Millville Airport Commerce Center.

RLS Logistics, a refrigerated storage and transportation company based in Newfield, N.J., recently broke ground on a 56-foot-tall, 1.6 million-cubic-foot warehouse at the Millville Airport Commerce Center, one of the few new commercial projects to see construction in South Jersey since the 2008 recession.

RLS Logistics is operated by brothers Tony Leo, CEO of warehousing, and Russell Leo, CEO of the transportation group, that stores and ships ready-to-bake breads and frozen fruits and vegetables nationwide to customers such as Costco Wholesale.?

"It's a family-owned, third-generation business. We store and ship frozen food for all kinds of clients," said John Pluciennik, vice president of corporate development. The company has outgrown its existing warehouse space according to Pluciennik.

RLS hired contractor Stanker & Galetto to build the warehouse, which will have heated floors to keep the concrete from buckling in the zero-degree atmosphere. "It's like a refrigerator. It has what we call a vapor barrier. You can't let air leak in or out or you'll get ice building up," Pluciennik told

Workers started erecting structural steel in late December on the sprawling 8-acre site. The warehouse will be designed to offer expansion room if the company needs it. The warehouse is also taller than most to take advantage of safer, more-stable forklifts that can reach that high. Cameras built into the lift can read the bar codes so the operators can choose the right pallets.

"The only reason buildings are getting taller is because equipment is getting more sophisticated. A forklift five years ago couldn't go that high and still be stable," said Pluciennik. "The economy is on an upturn in food service. Not many people have warehouse space left. It's a good sign that manufacturers are building inventory."

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