Powering Efficiency at Tyson’s New Bowling Green Facility

Two monitors hanging in a facility.

April 16, 2024

When Springdale, AR-based Tyson saw the value Interstates provided through design, automation, and construction on a previous project in Eagle Mountain, UT, it helped secure our spot as the first MEP trade brought on to build a new pork processing facility in Bowling Green, KY. This project demonstrated Interstates’ commitment to innovative technologies, timely execution, and tailored client solutions.

Interstates was pulled in early for this greenfield project as a design-assist partner, working hand-in-hand with Tyson and the design team to align the design, budget, and schedule. As the project progressed, Interstates also provided automation and instrumentation solutions. “The early engagement was key,” says Ryan Davis, Project Manager at Interstates. “We were able to constantly reevaluate our budget as the design was developed. If we ran into issues, we had the flexibility to offer alternatives that met the budget without compromising functionality.”

Focus on Constructability

Meeting Tyson’s goals on this project meant utilizing building information modeling (BIM) and depending on thorough constructability analyses. “Our focus on constructability included developing a strategic, detailed cable tray layout, medium-voltage distribution, and gear,” says Davis. “We worked hard to find the options that were reliable as well as cost-effective.” This approach was particularly crucial in addressing one of the project’s significant challenges: gear lead times. “We’re talking about 60-70 weeks for critical items,” Davis explains. “Our early involvement and strong relationship with Tyson allowed us to leverage early ordering power, which was instrumental in keeping the project on track.”

Shaun Maloney, Project Executive at Interstates, echoes this sentiment, highlighting the benefits of proactive scheduling and design involvement. “Our weekly meetings during the design phase and close collaboration with Tyson and the general contractor were fundamental in developing and updating a workable schedule,” he says.

Interstates’ expertise in industrialized construction was put to good use with the installation of medium-voltage distribution, low-voltage distribution, and refrigeration starters. Daryl Bryan, Superintendent at Interstates, says, “Tyson now has a robust power distribution system with room for growth. Our open build design allows them to change their process according to their needs.”

Turning Feedback into Solutions

A noteworthy aspect of this project was Interstates’ resourcefulness in meeting Tyson’s specific needs, particularly regarding conduit supports that met good manufacturing practice (GMP) quality standards and insulated metal panel penetration details. While Tyson recognized Interstates’ good work on its Eagle Mountain project, the client wanted something slightly different at this site, so it was back to the drawing board. “We created mock-ups as the standard for installations and worked with suppliers to produce unique bracketry details,” says Davis, underscoring Interstates’ commitment to tailor-made solutions. Maloney adds, “We have a long history with Tyson of taking feedback and developing products that satisfy Tyson GMP requirements.”

Interstates’ tailored approach involves seeking out cost-saving measures and efficiency enhancements that will benefit the client in the long term. “From alternative conductor types to fine-tuning the lighting package, our solutions were geared towards cost-effectiveness without compromising quality,” says Maloney. Interstates also pushed for remote switchboard operator boxes (designed and built by our prefabrication shop). “Going forward, people won’t have to be standing in front of that gear to operate it,” says Davis.

The Tyson Bowling Green project is a prime example of how Interstates’ expertise in industrialized construction and a strong commitment to client-focused solutions can yield exceptional results. Early engagement and proactive design involvement, with a focus on constructability, helped us deliver a successful project for this client.