The city of Phoenix Planning and Development Department has been vital to getting the storage facilities up and running with very specific requirements. The Pfizer vaccine requires cold storage at minus 94 degrees F, far lower than the typical freezers in use at medical centers for other vaccines. Planning and Development staff expedited the reviews and inspections for both Mayo Clinic Hospital and Langham Logistics. Mayo had to make some significant electrical upgrades to add 10 new freezers to its vaccine storage system. The plan review process, which is normally performed in-house, was accommodated in the field. The city’s Planning and Development staff helped contractors work through issues and get the approval of plans immediately to get the freezers up and running and ready for shipments.
Langham Logistics, located at 7200 W. Roosevelt, is a 64,870 square foot warehouse being converted for cold storage use. The large-scale project requires a fast turnaround for plans and for inspections and staff was able to get the facility running under a Temporary Certificate of Occupancy while other items are being finalized.
“It is not just the vaccine, it is everything related to the pandemic,” said Phoenix Building Official Stephen Dudley. “The urgency and scale of the COVID-19 pandemic have required the city of Phoenix Planning and Development Department staff to respond quickly to projects at every phase of the pandemic, including setting up testing sites, building research labs, upgrades to hospital facilities and construction of vaccine cold storage facilities. Our staff has taken great pride in their work on these projects and the contributions they are making to fight this pandemic, knowing the work they do is aimed at saving lives.”
Over the past several months, staff has also been working to expedite a COVID-19 research lab at 5020 N. Black Canyon and an N95 mask manufacturing facility at 2145 S. 7th Street.