Martin Steel Construction Cold Storage Construction

Cold Warehouse technical information

Cold Warehouse Construction
Blast Freezers
Freezer Walls, Floors, and Ceilings
Food Processing Plants
Insulated Panel Construction
Freezer Storage Considerations
Industrial Refrigeration Plants
24/7 Facilities Monitoring


Cold Warehouse Construction

At Martin Construction, cold storage construction is our forte. We can erect anything from food processing plants to small cold rooms to large cold storage warehouses. Refrigerated warehouse construction is very unique since great consideration must be given to what types of products will be stored. We customize each building design to the needs of our customers to ensure the highest levels of customer approval and quality.

Since every business is unique, every cold warehouse construction projects is also unique. There is quite a difference between a client who needs a cold room added on to an existing facility and a client who needs a sizable cold storage warehouse built from the ground up.  A dairy processing facility does not have the same needs as a frozen food processing plant. At Martin Construction, your needs are our first priority. It is our goal to custom design a solution to meet your present needs while considering your future needs as well.

At Martin Construction, we believe in providing only the best refrigerated warehouse construction services. We operate in the construction of standard cold warehouses and warehouses used for food processing. We believe that your build should be worry-free and hassle-free through the entire sequence.

Every project that Martin accepts is built to unique specifications and requirements. Many options must be considered when constructing a refrigerated warehouse facility including the best site for the project and any special engineering requirements needed. Our cold storage facility experts can guide you through every step of the building process.

When constructing a building designed for frozen storage, possibly the most important thing to consider is which concrete floor to use. Not all concrete floors are created equal and using the wrong one can lead to trouble and unnecessary expense. With our knowledge and experience, you will get the best possible concrete floor system to meet your cold storage warehousing needs.

Because so many different things must be considered, construction of refrigerated warehousing facilities requires an enormous degree of precision and detail. Since we specialize in this type of construction, we know that Martin Construction is the best choice for all of your cold storage warehousing projects. When you contact us, we will review your plans closely and share our strategy for building your perfect cold storage warehouse.

Blast Freezers

Blast freezers are uniquely used to rapidly cool and freeze various food products. Blast freezers are specialized in nature, and are capable of chilling items at very cold temperatures. Because of this, they are very common in the entire food industry.

Flash freezers use blowers which forcefully circulate super-cooled air throughout the freezer. This forced circulation allows more air contact with the food which brings it rapidly below freezing temperature. Some freezers have additional features like adjustable trays for positioning foods according to your needs, and to ensure even cooling and freezing.

Many freezers contain multiple compartments, so that different types of foods can be quickly frozen without risking cross-contamination. These types of freezers are capable of freezing foods at any temperature. Overloading however, especially of warmer foods, will cause a drop in freezing performance since the freezer must work much harder.

Once an item has been blast frozen, it can be moved to a conventional freezer for long term storage. As long as it is kept frozen, blast-frozen items can be safely stored for much longer periods of time than items frozen with conventional methods. The extreme cold produced by a blast freezer inhibits the growth of harmful bacteria which diminishes food spoilage and contamination risk. This makes blast freezing a popular choice in food service organizations.

Freezer Wall, Floor, and Ceiling Construction

Martin Construction uses premium materials and methods when cold warehouse construction. Here is a description of what goes into the building of a cold storage building.

For freezer ceiling construction in larger facilities, panels are typically placed on the outside over a metal “B” deck with EPDM roofing membrane over insulation which also acts as the vapor barrier. Layers of 5” Isocyanurate insulation achieving R-values from R-31 to R-50 are typical. For smaller facilities, a 6” expanded urethane metal clad sandwich panel is typical for the ceiling.

Typical freezer wall construction consists of the same 5” or 6” expanded urethane metal clad panels with R-values that range from R-32 to R-56. The metal acts as the vapor barrier. In addition to the thermal performance characteristics, the thickness of the wall also becomes a function of the wall height. Due to the constructability of the facility, it is common for the cooler walls and ceilings to be the same thickness as the freezer walls and ceilings for facilities that house both coolers and freezers. It is also common for loading docks adjacent to coolers to share the same wall and ceiling thickness.

Separating walls between coolers and freezers usually have 5” to 6” of urethane for insulation and have a metal frame structure. The goal on these walls is to prevent condensation from forming on the warm side of the wall so the thermal characteristics of the wall need to be high enough to prevent condensation from occurring. These walls are typically built with R-values exceeding R-26.

In refrigerated construction, one of the most important specifications to determine is the type of concrete floor that is needed. Concrete floors can be built in many different ways, and it is important to match the concrete floor slab to the facility’s location and intended purpose. Installing the wrong concrete floor slab can spell disaster for a project, but at Martin Construction we will work closely with you to make sure your cold storage building has the right type of concrete floor with the right seal for your needs. Every time we build a cold warehouse we determine which type of concrete floor and sealant system is best for the project.

Freezer floors are typically insulated from R-18 to R-30, depending on the soil and ground characteristics. They are typically constructed with warming glycol tubes set in a mud slab with 4” of rigid styrene over the mud slab and 6” of reinforced concrete poured over that. The glycol tubes may are to prevent under slab freezing which would lift and break a slab from frost formation. The size of the facility may also influence the cost of using under-slab glycol heating versus electrical resistance heating on smaller floor prints.

In facilities that house only cooler storage, it is typical for the ceilings to be constructed of wood framing with 4” of blow-on urethane insulation on the underside with R values from R-24 to R-40. The walls could be either 4” to 5” expanded urethane metal clad panels or sandwiched concrete panels with R values from R-23 to R-40. Cooler floors are typically un-insulated concrete slab on grade.

Premium construction starts with high quality professional design. That is vital to ensuring your refrigerated warehouse build meets your needs with refrigeration equipment that lasts. Martin Construction possesses a wealth of knowledge to help create food storage solutions that work for you. We have the knowledge you need to successfully guide you through every phase of your cold warehouse construction project. Our products keep the fundamentals of thermal design and construction in mind, while also being aesthetically pleasing and practical.

Food Processing Plants

Martin Construction designs and builds food processing plants with consideration of your current and future needs. By helping to maximize your production and minimize energy consumed, we provide you with a processing plant that will help in your success. We want to partner with you to build food processing building facilities that help you to run cost effective operations.

We focus first on the specific processes needed to manufacture your products. After this we then begin to look at design, layout, and architecture. Our team will work seamlessly to build a food processing facility that is right for your business.

At Martin Construction, we know the importance of the food processing industry to the nation’s food supply. Before modern food processing techniques were developed, the nation’s food supply was very subjected to spoilage and crop shortages. Modern technology has helped to increase production, distribution, and quality of the world's food supply.

At Martin Construction since we are experts in food processing construction, we believe our job is to make construction as hassle-free as possible for you so that you can focus on your core business. Once the build is finished, you will have a food processing facility designed for your company.

Martin Construction has experience constructing various types of food processing plants so we understand the needs and requirements of the industry. We have constructed food processing plants for meat packing, dairy processing lines, and other food processing systems. No matter what type of building you need, we will use our knowledge and experience to construct the perfect plant for your company. Here at Martin Construction we take the time to plan and build a customized plant that fulfills the needs of your business. We will build your plant so you can focus on efficiency and productivity.

Insulated Panel Construction

Martin Construction builds refrigerated warehouse construction with high-quality insulated metal panels. These panels consist of two metal skins filled with 2" up to 6" of urethane insulation. Assembly of this panelized construction system is quick and efficient.

insulated panel construction

R-Values of insulated panel construction are from R-16 up to R-49. Panels lengths can come in 10' up to 48' with interlocking, double tongue and grooves. The exterior face consists of 26, 24, or 22 gauge G-90 galvanized pre-painted steel.

Insulated panels have high fire resistance ratings and have USDA approved finishes for food environments.

The Higher "R-Values" and uniform insulation thickness of insulated metal panel construction help bring lower operating costs to your facility. Since the panels don't compress like blanket insulation your "R" value will not change over time. The insulated panels rigidity mean less steel is needed to support them because they can span longer distances.


We can provide refrigeration systems for supermarkets, convenience stores, restaurants, warehouses, food processing facilities, and manufacturing facilities. We can build cold storage space for environments from -20 degrees to +38 degrees.


Freezer Storage

We recognize that proper freezer storage and refrigeration processes are vital to your business. We also understand that because every customer is different, and thus the needs may change from industry to industry. Our refrigerated construction services include refrigeration systems design, feasibility studies, project management, concrete floor fabrication, insulation systems, cold storage doors, and vapor barriers.

We provide solutions for fresh food and frozen foods including ammonia refrigeration, blast freezers, walk-in freezers, and Freon refrigeration. We excel in knowing which technologies are available to best suit your needs. We can also provide fully automated computer-based climate control systems.

A refrigerated building’s function is largely determined by the products to be stored there. Factors such as the quantities of food items to be prepared and stored, how the products will be packaged, and specifics on temperatures and conditions for storage all affect the final design of the building.

There are commonly two types of freezing processes used in freezer storage. “Contact Freezing” costs less to operate and operates with flat hollow plates or slabs through which cooled refrigerants are circulated. Food is placed in direct contact with the plates and is cooled. Vertical plate freezers are common to seafood products, while horizontal plate freezers are common to packaged food products.

“Blast Freezing” (Flash Freezers) is common to freezer storage facilities as well. Batch air blast freezers are mainly used for package products on pallets, as well as loose products. Blast freezers cool the products quicker which results in a product that is finer in texture, keeps longer, and is more resistant to spoiling.

Industrial Refrigeration

At Martin Construction, we have extensive experience with industrial refrigeration plants of all types. While many types of refrigeration systems are used in other industries, ammonia refrigeration systems are found quite commonly in industrial refrigeration. This type of system uses anhydrous ammonia, or ammonia without water. Since Ammonia based refrigeration systems are so commonly used in the refrigeration of our everyday food items, we have made it a point to become experts in all aspects of these systems.

A large concern when building ammonia refrigeration systems for our refrigeration plants is the safety of your employees. There is always a risk when chemicals such as ammonia are present in a work environment. Workers can be subjected to fume inhalation, skin contact, ammonia explosions and fires. We will do everything in our power to make sure that the systems are free of manufacturing defects and other problems that could lead to any possible accidents in your facility. For additional protection, OSHA offers training programs for company owners and their employees which we feel is an absolute must for anyone using ammonia-based refrigeration, no matter how experienced.

Secondary to safety considerations is system efficiency. It is our goal that refrigeration system is energy-efficient as possible. At Martin Construction, we have extensive knowledge in all aspects of industrial refrigeration to make you project a success. Our engineers are experts at making all aspects of your systems work together. We will optimize your refrigeration systems so that they are as energy-efficient as possible, to saving your company money.

Want peace of mind?

We can provide 24 hour monitoring of your cold storage facilities. A sophisticated program monitors various levels of your facility including high or low temperatures, oil failures, open sensors, lighting, short cycling, and power failures.

View some of our past refrigerated warehouse projects on our
projects page