Saturday, July 28, 2012

A look at New Belgium's East Coast expansion

Posted By on Sat, Jul 28, 2012 at 8:33 AM

Yes, Asheville, N.C., is a long long way from here, leaving some of you to perhaps exclaim, "Why should I care?"

New Belgium Asheville
  • Behold the riverfront.

But my guess is that there's enough of you out there with Fat Tire in your fridge that are happy to keep apprised of the goings-on at America's third largest craft brewer: New Belgium Brewing Co.

The sustainability-minded, employee-owned hops giant, as most know by now, is expanding out of Fort Collins to the East Coast with a second brewing facility.

In a press release distributed yesterday, the brewery is sharing early conceptual renderings of what the new facility is expected to look like, including "a 'liquid center' tasting room, a 200-barrel brewhouse, malt building, packaging hall and cellar space."

New Belgium Asheville
  • A 'walkable' space.

CEO Kim Jordan is quoted as saying, “We could have built on a lot of sites but we wanted to be on a livable, walkable site."

Now what that means logistically:

The new facility will have to be elevated above the 100-year flood zone along the French Broad River. Buildings and material from the old Asheville stockyard will be recycled during deconstruction this fall with heavy demolition being done November thru December and ground-breaking in January.

The brewery is working with the city and state Departments of Transportation to make infrastructure improvements including the widening of roads, smoothing of curves and the addition of traffic signals. An off-site warehouse facility at a yet-to-be-determined location will minimize trucking traffic in the area.

New Belgium Asheville
  • View across water.

The brewery will have a 700,000-barrel capacity, producing both bottled and kegged beer for distribution along the east coast. The project is slated for completion in 2015.

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