Nutrien Pilot Plant and Laboratory Facility

Nutrien, formerly Agrium Advanced Technologies, is a high-tech agricultural research company that develops new technologies and crop input products, such as enhanced efficiency fertilizers (EEFs), to help feed the world more efficiently.

To develop new technologies that enhance crop production most effectively, Nutrien decided to move its research and development facility, which contains a pilot plant and laboratory to Greeley, Colorado.

We were chosen to assist with the project, which consisted of building a new, 18,000-square-foot agricultural research facility that was split between a structural steel frame pilot-scale production plant and a structural masonry research laboratory.

This was a high-profile project for Nutrien. Not only does the new construction serve as the company’s main research lab and testing facility, but the EEFs this new lab designs are critical to future agriculture because they increase nutrient availability to plants and increase crop productivity while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and water contamination. The construction was closely monitored by company leaders, who work in nearby Loveland.

Nutrien narrowed down possible sites for the facility to four. We performed due diligence and costing options for each site, helping Nutrien officials make an informed decision that was in the best long-term interest of the company. Nutrien chose the Greeley location because of its proximity to the Loveland facility and the potentially strong labor force in the area along the Colorado Front Range.

We provided the complete architectural and engineering package for the project. First, we completed a design charrette, which included key stakeholders, to define the project. These discussions helped determine the building use, functionality, design criteria, building footprint, land selection committee, and the timing of site tours.

In addition, we provided project management; site selection; charrette, entitlement, building permits, and architecture coordination; geotechnical, mechanical, structural, civil, electrical, and landscape designs; and survey services. A full geotechnical report was provided to address recommendations for the site development and shallow foundation design. We also provided construction materials engineering and testing during construction.

Shortly after the initial project was completed, one of our teams helped Nutrien increase the facility’s electrical system to handle higher loads.

The $10.5 million facility gives Nutrien a firm base in northern Colorado as it strives to help food growers get the most out of their crops and feed the world’s growing population.

Josh Erramouspe
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