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Frito Lay Scan-to-BIM

Charlotte, NC

Project Square Footage

~ 193, 312 s.f.

Market Sector


Project Type

Distribution Centers

Year Completed


In order to expand its production facility, Frito-Lay required building information on the existing manufacturing facility and distribution center. The two buildings are separated by a two-lane State Road. This has served as an obstacle in the production of their products because it slows down the packaging process and, more importantly, their just-in-time deliveries to their customers. Historically, chips were bagged and boxed in the manufacturing plant, subsequently loaded onto a truck for transport across the street for delivery to the distribution center. The products would then undergo a packing process and be loaded onto a truck for shipment to the customer. To address the issue and improve production and shipment efficiencies, Frito-Lay decided to construct an insulated, over the road conveyor system to connect the two buildings.

Architectural Resource Consultants (ARC) was contracted to provide a High Definition Survey (HDS) 3D laser scan for specific areas of interest (AOI). Included were 17, 792 s.f. of the production facility and 153,920 s.f. of space in the distribution center. An additional 21,600 s.f. of exterior space (consisting of loading docks and the roof of both buildings) was also part of the scope.

The project required NC State DOT approvals as well as traditional surveying services. For this reason, ARC partnered with a local Charlotte professional surveying company. They established both interior and exterior control points allowing ARC to scan the facilities and subsequently connect all the data. ARC's final deliverable to the client included a 3D Revit as-built model. Model elements included structural steel members, fire protection piping, exterior wall elevations, and legible panel schedules for building electrical systems. Those visible elements assisted in the creation of an existing conditions "base file" model highlighting the basic architectural, structural, mechanical, plumbing, electrical, and fire protection systems. Once completed, Frito-Lay began to realize positive changes in production while reducing time to get the product to market.

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