PROJECTS PET PROJECT: FORUM STUDIO HELPS AN ENTREPRENEUR TO SCALE UP OPERATIONS
Mary Moody founded Stella & Chewy’s in her Manhattan apartment. The entrepreneur recognized an opportunity in the pet food market as people were increasingly seeking healthy, organic products for their furry companions. As Moody’s business grew from her living room to a multi-million dollar operation, she knew that she’d have to scale up to keep up.
Enter Forum Studio’s Industrial architecture group. Stella & Chewy’s dated facility on the outskirts of Milwaukee was bursting at the seams. The production floor had reached capacity, with workers, equipment, and finished product competing for space. Inefficient rack layout meant that palettes of pet food were squeezed wherever they could fit. Space limitations prevented the company from introducing new, more effective equipment, into the operation.
Like Moody, Forum Studio planners understood that Stella & Chewy’s future success hinges on a highly efficient process flow. Beyond serving the company’s current needs, the process had to anticipate future expansion. Operations, manufacturing, distribution, and office each would have a dedicated space, but would remain interconnected. A myriad of process improvements were recommended in a plan for a new facility, but not all of them demanded more space. For example, Forum Studio was able to reduce costly freezer footprint by nearly15,000 sf by drawing a more efficient rack layout.
As the plan begins to take shape in a new, purpose-built facility in Wisconsin, every decision that Forum Studio made in partnership with the client will enhance efficiency without sacrificing the wellness-driven mission. But one thing will not change: Moody’s muses — her adopted pets — will continue to be welcome at the new building.