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Business and arts side by side at new cold store

This morning saw HB Grandi CEO Vilhjálmur Vilhjálmsson take the symbolic first spadeful of earth at the site of the new grading unit and cold store to be built on the east side of the company’s factory in Reykjavík. Work is due to begin shortly and the new building is  scheduled to be ready for use at the end of May.

According to HB Grandi production manager Torfi Th. Thorsteinsson, who oversees shore production in Reykjavík and at Akranes, the new cold store will have a 2600 square metre floor space and will have space for between 5000 and 6000 tonnes of frozen products. The 1200 square metre grading unit will be built as part of the same construction. Design and project management are in the hands of architect and civil engineering company AVH. Construction and ground work will be handled by ÍAV, while Kælismidjan Frost has been contracted to supply the refrigeration systems. Electrical installations for the buildings and the refrigeration systems are being designed and will be fitted by Rafeyri.

The new cold store is much needed and will solve many of the problems HB Grandi has faced in terms of cold storage space. The company currently rents cold storage at Örfirisey, and frozen products from both the factory trawlers and the Reykjavík production plant are frequently stored in freezing containers or in rented space both in Iceland and overseas.

As part of the construction programme, it has been decided to open a competition for the construction of a work of art to be placed close to the south-east wall of the new cold store. This artwork will be a prominent feature of the entrance to the old harbour in Reykjavík and the busy business district to the west and the Harpa opera house and the harbour entrance to the east. The proposed work of art will be visible over a wide section of the harbour area. The proposal is that the artist, or co-operating artists, complete their free-standing work or art at the south-east side of the new building, or complete a work of art that connects the wall itself with the 1300 square metre open space east of the building.