H. J. Heinz Co. has partnered with Stellar to build a new frozen-food manufacturing facility in Florence, S.C. The 225,000-square-foot plant will produce Smart Ones and Boston Market frozen meals. Stellar, a fully integrated design, construction and mechanical services firm, broke ground on the facility in summer 2008. It is due to be substantially complete in the fall of 2009.

Stellar will provide design and construction services, including civil, architectural, structural, mechanical and electrical engineering. In addition, the company will provide HVAC services and will self-execute the installation of the insulated metal panels, roofing, cold storage doors and utility piping. Sharpe Engineering will install the equipment, and Bassett Mechanical will install the refrigeration.

The processing, distribution and packaging facility was needed due to growth in Heinz’s frozen-meal division. It will be constructed of insulated metal panel walls and a single-ply membrane roof. The facility will include a large group of processing rooms, packaging and palletizing rooms, dry storage, a minus 10-degree freezer, refrigerated shipping docks, spiral freezers and a two-story welfare area.