The Kansas Food Bank is expanding.
Construction is set to begin this week on a 21,000-square-foot addition to the food bank’s existing warehouse near downtown.
Brian Walker, president of the food bank, said the current space doesn’t have enough room for the food bank’s nearly 5,000 yearly volunteers -- a number, he said, that continues to grow.
The $5 million expansion will include a space for the volunteers, who currently work in the main warehouse.
“We are very blessed that people in our community want to give back with their time,” he said. “So, we’ll be able to expand our volunteer opportunities.”
The expansion will also include increased storage and cooler space.
Walker said the extra cooler capacity will allow the food bank to store more fresh produce. He said the food bank has made it a priority to provide healthier food.
The Kansas Food Bank packages and delivers 12 million pounds of food across the state each year.
A groundbreaking event will be held Wednesday at the food bank warehouse, 1919 E. Douglas. Walker will by joined by Wichita Mayor Jeff Longwell and representatives from Cargill Protein and Spirit AeroSystems.
Construction is expected to be completed by May 2019.
Ray Strunk is an intern in the KMUW News Lab.