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News Construction starts on $12 million addition, remodeling to Tarrant Area Food Bank

Construction starts on $12 million addition, remodeling to Tarrant Area Food Bank

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Robert Francis
Robert is a Fort Worth native and longtime editor of the Fort Worth Business Press. He is a former president of the local Society of Professional Journalists and was a freelancer for a variety of newspapers, weeklies and magazines, including American Way, BrandWeek and InformatonWeek. A graduate of TCU, Robert has held a variety of writing and editing positions at publications such as the Grand Prairie Daily News and InfoWorld. He is also a musician and playwright.

Tarrant Area Food Bank broke ground Sept. 25 on a two-story, 28,200-square-foot building being added to its facilities at 2525 Cullen St. in Fort Worth. The new addition is named the Dorothy and Norman M. Kronick Program and Administration Building in honor of a leading donation from the Fort Worth Foundation. The Kronick Building will provide space for programs and operations that formerly were housed in the nonprofit organization’s warehouse. Along with the groundbreaking, TAFB kicked off a capital campaign to raise funds for renovating, updating and expanding the food bank’s food distribution center, or warehouse. The total cost of the new addition and the renovations amount to $12 million, according to TAFB officials. 

The Building to Feed Communities campaign is needed to increase food distribution capacity, according to Bo Soderbergh, executive director of Tarrant Area Food Bank. Food is distributed by more than 300 pantries and partner agencies across the food bank’s 13-county service area. In one year, these hunger-relief charities currently serve more than 460,000 hungry people, including children, senior citizens, veterans and low-wage workers.

During fiscal year 2014, Tarrant Area Food Bank distributed 33 million pounds of fresh, frozen and non-perishable groceries. By 2020, the food bank projects that the need for assistance will increase to more than 50 million pounds of food annually. “Fortunately, we are receiving more and more nutritious and higher quality food donations, food that must be stored and distributed even more quickly and efficiently,” Soderbergh said. To assure speed and efficiency in distributing that amount of food, renovations on the warehouse will include improved cold storage, reconfiguration for new freezers and a warehouse management system. Warehouse upgrades are expected to be completed by 2016. Additional gifts supporting the Kronick Building construction project came from a coalition of foundations, including the Amon Carter, Sid Richardson, Mabee, Paul E. Andrews Jr. and Ryan. Another significant grant was received from an anonymous family foundation. Steel and Freeman Inc. is the general contractor for the project.

-Betty Dillard bdillard@bizpress.net  

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