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Under Construction: Top Facility Projects of June 2024

Facilities Management Advisor’s “Under Construction” series highlights some of the latest, most interesting facility project announcements every month.

Sports Arena Makeover

Scotiabank Arena, home to the NHL’s Toronto Maple Leafs and NBA’s Toronto Raptors, recently started the second phase of its $350 million Scotiabank Arena Reimagination project. Owned and operated by Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment (MLSE), the venue first opened in 1999 and completed Phase 1 of its arena-wide makeover in October 2023.

Courtesy: Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment

Organization: Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment 
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Type of project: Renovations
Size: 665,000 square-foot arena
Estimated cost: $350 million total
Design-build team: Brisbin Brook Beynon Architects, PCL Construction, and DesignAgency
Status: Phase 2 started May 14
Expected completion: Spring 2025

Interesting tidbit: As Phase 2 renovations take place through spring 2025, the facility will remain open at full capacity for all expected games and shows. Work will focus on making capital improvements to the 100 Level concourse and building a brand-new luxury space called the MNP Pass Social Club. Project highlights include a major retail shop integrating new contactless RFID (radio frequency identification) check-out tech; more inclusive and accessible spaces, including an infant feeding room, a prayer room, and all-gendered restrooms; frictionless security screening at entryways; audio-visual system and Wi-Fi enhancements; and digital signage upgrades to support fan communications and wayfinding.

Quote: MLSE President and CEO Keith Pelley said, “Following the success of last summer’s first phase of the Scotiabank Arena Reimagination project, we are thrilled to introduce even more state-of-the-art improvements to Canada’s top-ranked venue this summer.”

More details available here.

Toyota Electric Forklift Factory

Cars aren’t the only thing going electric these days. Once powered mostly by fossil fuels, forklifts used in warehouses and distribution centers, at ports, and many other facilities where some heavy lifting is required are getting greener. As such, Toyota Material Handling is expanding its North American headquarters in Columbus, Ind., to meet growing demand. The manufacturer—which first began building forklifts in Columbus in 1990—is investing nearly $100 million for a new 295,000-square-foot factory dedicated to producing electric products.

Courtesy: Toyota Material Handling

Organization: Toyota Material Handling
Location: Columbus, Ind.
Type of project: New build
Size: 295,000 square feet
Estimated cost: Nearly $100 million
Status: Ground broken May 30
Expected completion: N/A

Interesting tidbit: The new facility will allow Toyota to leverage cutting-edge manufacturing processes to produce electric products much more quickly than it can today. Including this newest project, Toyota has completed more than 15 total expansions in 34 years, with over $400 million in total investments. When the new factory is complete, Toyota’s Columbus footprint will grow to nearly 1.8 million square feet—more than six times larger than the 280,000 square-foot facility it opened in 1990.

Quote: Brett Wood, president and CEO of Toyota Material Handling North America, noted, “Electric forklifts make up 65% of the North American market, and this trend toward electrification in the material handling industry will continue to grow.”

More details available here.

$1.6B Houston Hospital

Harris Health System, UTHealth Houston, and local officials recently broke ground on a new $1.6 billion hospital on the Harris Health Lyndon B. Johnson (LBJ) Hospital Campus in northeast Houston. The project signals the start of Harris Health’s $2.9 billion investment in its multiphase, multiyear strategic facilities plan to add a new Level-I capable trauma hospital, renovate the current LBJ facility, expand the capacity of existing Harris Health Ben Taub Hospital, and add three new health centers throughout Harris County.

Courtesy: Harris Health System

Organization: Harris Health System
Location: Houston, Texas
Type of project: New build
Size: ~1.3 million square feet
Estimated cost: $1.6 billion
Status: Ground broken May 9
Expected completion: Late 2028

Interesting tidbit: The 12-story hospital will replace the current and aging LBJ Hospital. It will include approximately 1.3 million square feet and feature 390 private rooms, with the space to add 60 more when needed. With a rooftop helipad, 15 dedicated operating rooms, and a cutting-edge hybrid operating room, the hospital is designed to cater to a wide range of medical needs from routine procedures to the most complex emergency surgeries. The location is also important, as it will continue to serve as an expanded clinical training ground for UTHealth Houston’s McGovern Medical School. 

Quote: Harris Health Board Chair Andrea Caracostis, MD, said, “This is the beginning of a monumental improvement in our medical infrastructure to provide state-of-the-art facilities and exceptional healthcare for all Harris County residents.” 

More details available here.

Extra Soy Sauce

All that soy sauce we get in restaurants, stores, and takeout bags needs to come from somewhere, right? Well, it turns out a lot of it is produced in none other than Wisconsin! To the sound of massive Japanese taiko drums and the background of a traditional Shinto ceremony, leading soy sauce maker Kikkoman and Gov. Tony Evers broke ground on a new production facility in the rural community of Jefferson, the company’s second plant in the state.

Courtesy: Kikkoman

Organization: Kikkoman
Location: Jefferson, Wis.
Type of project: New build
Size: N/A
Estimated cost: $560 million
Status: Ground broken June 13
Expected completion: Fall 2026

Interesting tidbit: Kikkoman has played a vital role in the Wisconsin economy for more than 50 years. In 1973 with the opening of Kikkoman Foods Inc. in Walworth, the company transformed farm fields into what has now reportedly become the highest-producing soy sauce facility in the western world. With a $560 million price tag, this new facility will produce soy sauce and soy sauce-related seasonings, including teriyaki sauce.

Quote: Yuzaburo Mogi, honorary CEO and chairman, said, “Kikkoman believes in Wisconsin, and we are grateful to this great state for believing in us. Our collaboration began half a century ago as a leap of faith, and today, it continues as a promise of continued growth and cultural connection.”

More details available here.

Port of Seattle’s Green Renovation

The Port of Seattle broke ground on the renovation of the historic Ship Supply Building at Fishermen’s Terminal, paving the way for its transformation into a modern, Living Building Challenge (LBC)-certified Maritime Innovation Center (MInC). The new facility will serve a confluence of maritime industry needs that will bring together students and innovators from business, public agencies, and academia, along with community stakeholders to collaborate around maritime industry needs and opportunities.

Courtesy: Miller Hull Partnership

Organization: Port of Seattle
Location: Seattle, Wash.
Type of project: Renovation
Size: N/A
Estimated cost: Part of $100 million initiative
Design-build team: Miller Hull Partnership LLP
Status: Ground broken May 21
Expected completion: N/A

Interesting tidbit: As a certified “Living Building,” the MInC will generate its own energy using solar power, capture its own water, and process its own waste. The adaptive reuse project will also maintain and respect the form and mass of the 1918 building fronting the working waterfront. Most of the building and its century-old heavy timber structure will be salvaged and reused.

Quote: Port Commissioner Fred Felleman said, “The transformation of the port’s oldest asset into one that can meet the Living Building Challenge symbolizes the port’s recognition of the maritime industry’s significance to our region’s history and future.”

More details available here.

Honorable Mentions

Do you have a major project announcement you’d like considered for the “Under Construction” series? Please contact Editor Joe Bebon at

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