- Created on Tuesday, 03 July 2001 02:48
- Written by Eda Anne Galeno
ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. – Two years ago, when an Atlantic City street expansion project to increase access to casinos and the boardwalk was announced, Atlantic City Linen Supply Inc. owners Tom D’Onofrio and David Goldberg were faced with the daunting reality of having to relocate their North Carolina Avenue facility.
Operating since 1986, Atlantic City Linen Supply had been serving seven area hotels and employing local residents on the avenue which was slated for expansion.
Today, the old facility on North Carolina Avenue is vacant and awaiting demolition while six blocks away a brand new $14 million state-of-the-art laundry now stands -- thanks to a relocation project partially funded by Atlantic City’s Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA.) Under eminent domain laws, the old facility was condemned,
enabling the owners to relocation benefits.
“This was not an easy project to put together, but it took place because of the commitment of this company to Atlantic City and their workforce,” said Atlantic City Mayor, James Whelan, at the ribbon cutting for the new 63,000 square foot facility.
“We chose to stay in Atlantic City for three main reasons,” said David Goldberg, president / CEO. “About 90 percent of our employees live in the area and we wanted to maintain our workforce, we believe in Atlantic City and we wanted to stay close to our customers.”
The new facility currently produces over 100,000 pounds of sheets, towels, napkins, bedspreads and uniforms daily from area hotels including Harrah’s, the Sands, Resorts, Trump Taj Mahal, Trump Plaza, Tropicana, Bally’s Park Place, the Showboat, Ceasar’s, and the Atlantic City Hilton. “We were maxed out at the old plant,” says Goldberg. “And now we’re only operating at 50 percent capacity. We’re looking to do up to 200,000 pounds a day.”
Highly automated machines and an efficient layout have allowed the facility to cut operations from 24 hours-a-day to 12, yet there’s still plenty of room for growth in the new facility, says David Costabile, vice president of sales for PAC Industries, Inc., the distributor that sold and installed the new equipment along with overseeing the plant’s opening.
The laundry is alive with activity – but not the human kind. Most operations are orchestrated and tracked from the facility’s central computer control room housing Milnor’s Mildata plant management software. Goods moved through the wash, dry and finishing areas of the facility on a variety of conveyors, rail systems and shuttles are tracked by each customer code from the moment they enter the facility until they leave.
Fifty-percent of incoming soiled goods arrive pre-sorted and the remaining goods are sorted in-house prior to being sent to their respective processing areas via automatic incline loading conveyors which dump goods into sling bags at a predetermined weight. Overhead storage rails hold the laundry until it is called to one of three Pellerin Milnor continuous batch (tunnel) washers programmed to process specific types of soiled goods. There is an eight-module unit which handles strictly table linen and accessory work and two 12-module tunnels; one processes only sheets and pillowcases, the other terry items. Milnor’s 31-bar single stage presses await the linens and bedding goods while a 47-bar press is used on terries and large towels. Milnor’s double-cake shuttle conveyors automatically transport washed/pressed goods to one of 14 Milnor double batch dryers, eleven gas-heated (sheets and towels) and three steam-heated models (table linen and bedspreads.)
“The final layout of the laundry was strategically designed with specific linen flow in mind,” Costabile said.
Quick Rinse - News From Around The World
Textile Services Industry Gets National Spotlight
WILIMGTON, Mass. — Textile service executive Ronald Croatti recently appeared on the CBS-TV show “Undercover Boss.” Croatti is CEO of UniFirst Corp., in Wilmington, Mass. For most Americans watching “Undercover Boss” it was their first view inside a commercial laundry, which typically process between 10 million and 25 million pounds of uniforms, table linens, bed sheets, towels and more every year “The reusable textile services business is the original green industry,” said Ricci. “Commercial laundries reuse linen instead of filing landfills with disposable alternatives and continually discover new, innovative means to reduce energy consumption and recycle water. Our huge economies of scale allow laundries to use about two-thirds less water, energy and detergent than alternatives, such as washing at home, while hygienically cleaning textile products, improving disease control and reducing contamination.”