At the Aalst branch of IT distributor TD Synnex, the word ‘expansion’ had been at the top of the to-do list in capital letters for some time. The growing company was looking for a place to set up a larger and immediately future-proof warehouse, and found it surprisingly close by. WDP’s expertise was ultimately the deciding factor: there will be no major relocation, but rather a complete transformation of the current site that will boost capacity, sustainability, and liveability for local residents.
There was mostly pride, but also some relief, on the face of Senior Vice President Patrick Steenssens as the first piles for the new TD Synnex warehouse officially went into the ground. Pride because this marks the beginning of a new chapter for the international distributor of IT materials in which economies of scale, sustainability, and efficiency play the main roles. But also relief, as all activities can remain under the same, familiar roof with this ambitious project.
An instant step further
“An expansion of our warehouse was necessary, but we also wanted to go a step further,” explains Patrick Steenssens. “This was an opportunity to immediately build a future-proof warehouse that would meet all modern requirements. That combination posed quite a challenge.”
The new warehouse will be a paragon of sustainability, including heat pumps, solar panels on the roof, rainwater recovery, charging stations for electric cars, and the possibility of charging electric trucks in the future. “Everything will be in place to continue playing a pioneering role in the future when it comes to green energy,” said the proud business manager.
No relocation required
Perhaps the most unique thing about this whole project is where it is happening: not at a new, larger site, but rather on the existing site on the Tragel industrial estate in Aalst. Steenssens and WDP project manager Koen Baele both agree that it’s not the most obvious choice.
“An expansion had long been written in the stars,” Baele said. “This was the only way the capacity could go up. The main question was: can we do it here or should we move out? The longer the thinking and design process took, the more impatient international management became and the closer we came to moving. We had a lot of spirited discussions with TD Synnex, but in the end WDP’s expertise helped us avoid a move – partial or otherwise.”
TD Synnex and WDP together opted for a complete transformation of the site: a state-of-the-art automated warehouse will be added, connected to the existing one by a corridor. The current buildings will also undergo extensive renovations. “But we will do much more than that: we will create green areas, address mobility around the site, and keep heavy traffic away from western side, which is close to a residential area. Despite expanding activities, we are drastically scaling back the impact for local residents,” Baele concludes.
The expansion of this site is a great illustration of what is possible when a growing company’s ambition meets WDP’s expertise. The result is an improvement for all parties involved: TD Synnex expands and becomes more sustainable without any moving boxes, the Tragel industrial estate gains a reference site, and local residents see the liveability of their neighbourhood grow. It will only increase the pride on the senior vice president’s beaming face.