Armen Devejian of Associated Design & Engineering, Inc., on behalf of Busseto Foods has filed Plan Amendment/Rezone Application No. P20-04209 and related Development Permit Application No. P20-04211 pertaining to two (2) vacant parcels totaling approximately ±18.9 acres located on southeast corner of South West and West Church Avenues.
Plan Amendment Application No. P20-04209 proposes to amend the Fresno General Plan and Southwest Fresno Specific Plan to change the planned land use designations for the subject property from Residential – Medium Density (±18.9 acres) to Employment – Light Industrial (±18.9 acres).
The rezone application component proposes to amend the Official Zoning Map of the City of Fresno to rezone the subject property from the RS-5/UGM (Residential Single Family, Medium Density/Urban Growth Management) (±18.9 acres) zone district to the IL (Light Industrial/Urban Growth Management) (±18.9 acres) zone district in accordance with the Plan Amendment Application.
Related Development Permit Application No. P20-04211 requests authorization to construct a state of the art ±477,470 square-foot two (2) story food production, warehousing, and distribution facility for Busseto Foods, Inc., a manufacturer and marketer of Italian-style specialty meats which include salami, prosciutto, and other dried meats. The project will allow Busseto Foods to consolidate all four (4) Fresno based facilities and operations under one roof.
The project will also include on and off-site improvements including but not limited to: four (4) points of ingress and egress (two (2) along South West Avenue and two (2) along West Church Avenue); curbs, gutters, and sidewalks; landscaping; and guest, employee, and truck parking. All trucks will enter and exit the site only from the two (2) drive approaches along South West Avenue. All vehicular (i.e. employee and guests) will enter and exist the site only from the two (2) drive approaches along West Church Avenue. In addition, the project will also require dedications and/or acquisitions for public street rights-of-way and utility easements as well as the construction of public facilities and infrastructure in accordance with the standards, specifications and policies of the City of Fresno.
The proposed facility is anticipated to produce approximately 500,000 to 600,000 pounds of dried salami, pancetta, coppa, and prosciutto per week. No slaughtering or butchering of meat will take place in the facility and production of these items involves a non-odor emitting process consisting of fermentation and drying in atmosphere-controlled rooms. Nearly all meat will arrive frozen from other locations.
A majority of operations including processing, warehousing, and distribution activities will occur on the ground floor (470,730 square feet) with administrative activities occurring on the second floor (6,740 square feet). The facility will include a large kitchen, refrigeration and freezing cold boxes; rooms for seasoning, storage, washing, cleaning, and unpacking and packing, as well as loading and unloading docks. Nearly one half of the building will be a giant drying room for the prosciutto.
The new campus will provide indoor and outdoor break areas, including a covered pavilion with seating for employees, lactation room for nursing mothers, and medical facilities.
The proposed facility will be designed and built with state of the art technological and energy efficient products, materials, and methods including Building Energy Modeling and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification. 100 percent of the kitchen equipment, conveyor systems, and operational support equipment (i.e. forklifts, etc.) will be electric and powered by solar energy to the maximum extent possible. In addition, EV charging stations will be provided, and incentives will be available to staff who choose to carpool or utilize electric vehicles.
The Facility will operate five (5) days per week, Monday through Friday, from 5:00 am to 10:30 pm. Shifts will comprise one (1) production shift (5:00 am to 2:00 pm) and two (2) slicing and packaging shifts (5:00 am to 1:30 pm and 2:30 pm to 10:30 pm).
Approximately 160 employees are projected to work at the Facility, including 20-50 temporary/part-time seasonal employees that are projected to work from September to December.
Truck trips associated with the proposed new facility will consist of shipping, receiving, and freezer activities during weekdays, Monday through Friday, from either 8:00 am to 12:30 pm or 1:00 to 5:00 pm. In total, the Project anticipates between 10 and 13 truck trips per day. Truck unloading and loading is proposed adjacent to the facility; truck loading is to be located on the western portion of the site and truck unloading is to be located on the eastern portion of the site, accessible by drive aisles located to the south of the site. Tractor trailers on site during loading and unloading will not be permitted to idle their engines. All trucks must be equipped with electrical refrigeration units that will “plug in” at the loading bays.