Editor’s note: The Business Journal features profiles of North Bay construction projects that are complete or nearly so. Send details to jquackenbush@busjrnl.com or fax to 707-521-5292.

Biagi Bros./Jackson Family Wines distribution center 1200 Green Island Road, American Canyon

Owner and developer: Scannell Properties, Indianapolis

Description:  650,000-square-foot distribution facility on nearly 35 acres, with 12,773 square feet of office space and about 630,000 square feet of warehouse and industrial space. The building has 24 truck dock doors, with the ability to add 20 more, and 14 rail car doors opening to a 1,600-foot-long private rail spur. The staging area has 106 parking spaces and room for 30 truck trailers.

Completion:  Oct. 14, 2009

General contractor:  Sierra View General Contractor, Granite Bay

Architecture: structure and interiors – Perkins, Williams & Cotterill, Rancho Cordova; landscape – Garh Ruffner Landscape Architect, Roseville

Engineering: civil – Riechers Spence & Associates, Napa; electrical – Bosley Electric Contracting Co., Sacramento; mechanical – ACE Heating and Cooling, Rocklin; soils – Wallace Kuhl and Associates, West Sacramento; structural – Wood Rodgers, Sacramento

LEED consultant: Lionakis, Sacramento

Cost:  $28.76 million

Tenants:  Jackson Family Wines in 475,000 square feet and Biagi Bros. in 175,000 square feetThe amount of space under one contiguous roof – 15 acres – is massive, enough to encompass 11 football fields or 10 Boeing 747 jetliners parked wingtip to wingtip. But what got the attention of Santa Rosa-based vintner Jackson Family Wines and Napa-based trucker and warehouser Biagi Bros. is the ability to house about 5 million cases of wine in a warehouse chilled to 54 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit while using 61 percent less energy than facilities of similar size.

Jackson is consolidating cases of wine to this facility from 10 warehouses serving its North Coast wineries, according to Kathryn Zepaltas, director of distribution and logistics for Jackson. The ability to ship casegoods to major wine markets nationwide by rail made this site attractive. Currently, freight rail service isn't available in Sonoma and Mendocino counties.

"Each boxcar equals three truckloads of wine and one locomotive moves a number of cars, so this promotes carbon footprint reduction," she said. Traditionally, trucks would move the wine from the winery to a warehouse, where the cases would be consolidated for transportation to market.

Wine is set to start rolling out of the American Canyon warehouse early next year.

The energy-saving features of the building include R-19 insulation in the walls and roof and a thermal plastic "cool roof" to reflect heat. That amount of insulation, together with the "thermal mass" of that much wine, could allow the 500-ton chilling system to be out  for up to 15 days without increasing the temperature of the wine more than one degree, according to R. Paul Zenak, LEED AP, project manager for Sierra View General Contractor. Other energy savers include motion-activated higher-efficiency T-8 light fixtures and variable-frequency motors in the climate-control system.

Water for the open-loop cooling tower is sanitized via a high-tech Dolphin Water Care ultraviolet device.

"This building was built with maximum flexibility," said Mr. Zenak.

The project is registered with the U.S. Green Building Council for silver level certification, the third-highest, under the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design rating system. Potential rating points could come from the recycling or reuse of 85 percent of construction waste, low-offgasing office paint and warehouse slab seam caulk, and reused furniture.

When a 1 megawatt solar-electricity array is installed on 200,000 square feet of reinforced roof, the project may qualify for LEED gold.

The 11-month project was completed two weeks ahead of schedule, according to Mr. Zenak. Almost a month was shaved from the project by having Fincast Precast manufacture the 524 concrete wall panels in its Redding factory.

The expansive slab required 13,000 cubic yards of concrete, poured up to 45,000 square feet at a time over three weeks.

Jackson's 10,000-square-foot office will house 11 customer service, inventory control and warehouse management employees.

Biagi's 3,000-square-foot office is set to have 10 employees, and the company may have up to five working in the warehouse at peak periods. A 12,000-gallon fuel tank will serve Biagi's trucks.

Carneros Vintners4204 Stage Gulch Road, Sonoma

Owner and developer: The Vintners Group, Acampo

Description: 52,000-square-foot custom winery on 25 acres. Initial annual production and storage capacity is 1 million gallons of wine, equivalent to 500,000 9-liter cases, and crush capacity is 6,000 tons of grapes. The facility permit allows for 3 million gallons of storage and processing as well as annual crush of 18,000 tons.

Completion: October 2009

General contractor: Commercial Construction Consulting, Reno, Nev.

Metal fabrication: Ogletree's, St. Helena

Architecture: structure and interior –Steve Martin Associates, Sebastopol; landscape – Susie Dowd Markarian, APLD, Santa Rosa

Engineering: civil – Steve Martin Associates; electrical – JRA Electrical Engineers, Napa; soils - PJC & Associates, Sonoma; structural – Ty Fiscus Consulting Engineer, Graton

Lenders: VinREIT, St. Helena, and private sources

Construction started one year ago and encountered a number of weather- and permitting-related delays, but enough of the business end of the large crush-to-bottle custom winery was completed in early October to accommodate delivery and processing of winegrapes from the 2009 harvest.

"We made it," said Tyson Rippey, vice president and general manager of The Vintners Group. The company also operates a large custom winery in Lodi. "There were a lot of skeptics, but it's definitely a functioning winery."

The facility has capacity to crush 1,200 to 1,500 tons of grapes this year. The company had contracts this year for most of that, largely secured in August and September, according to Mr. Rippey.

"We were very cautious not to commit to anyone before we were open," he said.

Seventy used and new tanks, including about a half-dozen open-top tanks, were acquired by the 2009 harvest. Next year, the winery is expecting to finalize facility design and purchase more tanks, including more open-top fermenters. Though allowed to crush much more, plans call for crush capacity to be limited to 8,000 tons, according to Mr. Rippey. However, tank capacity will increase to the permitted maximum to accommodate bulk-storage clients.

Currently, the winery has two Delta destemmer-crushers – a 90-ton-an-hour crusher for large grape lots and a 15-ton-per-hour for five-ton lots – and three Bucher bladder presses of varying sizes and can accommodate whole-cluster pressing popular for white grapes. Small-scale clientele, including large vintners with small-lot labels, are expected to make up 15 percent to 20 percent of total production.

Carneros Vintners has partnered with Halsey Bottling to install two bottling lines capable of throughput of 300 bottles a minute.

A winery has been planned for the Sonoma Valley site since Napa-based UCC Vineyard Fund acquired the excess Soils Plus property in February 2001. A project called Carneros View was launched in 2005 and approved for 250,000 cases per year. In June 2008  CCC VinREIT LLC acquired the property.

VinREIT, a St. Helena-based subsidiary of Entertainment Properties Trust, had invested $7.7 million in land acquisition for and construction of Carneros Vintners and committed another $800,000 as of the end of June of this year, according to company filings.