BRYAN, Tex. (KBTX) - It's been six years in the making for the Brazos Valley Food Bank's newest facility, and in the final day of October, the change was finally made.
"We are operating only at a third of the space," said Brazos Valley Food Bank Executive Director Theresa Mangapora about their new facility, "but I can tell that they're happier than we were over there. We've got new forklifts, we've got really nice racking system. This is a climate-controlled space, so it's not hot in here. It's not cold in here. It's kind of perfect in here."
For about a month, it's looked a lot like Christmas for the Brazos Valley Food Bank as it's preparing for its largest food drive of the year, and space shouldn't be a concern once the dust settles.
"We would have to stack that stuff in between aisles and everywhere at our other location," said Mangapora, "and we may have to this year at this one just because we're under construction, but next year, no way."
The freezer/cooler has been called one of the cornerstones of the entire project. acclimating to the recent trends of food banks.
"Six years ago, we were hardly doing any fresh and frozen foods, and now, it's like a hallmark," said Mangapora. "It's a huge goal for it to be half of what we do, so we had to have the right equipment and we had to think long term. This unit is a freezer/cooler, but the floor is being put in so the entire thing could be a freezer ten years from now."
With 33,000 more square feet to work with, the food bank can build on the space for the future.
"It's gonna allow us to have these different programs work together and work better in the community, because we're going to have meeting space and people can come and see that food is a basic need, and it ties to the needs of all the different clients at different agencies. We're working on different issues and how we actually should be working together," said Mangapora."