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Catwalk Project

Catwalk Project – Split or Open Case Picking

Order Fulfillment was the original and primary purpose for a designated area of this facility. The unique requirement for this project was getting the “solution” conceptualized, designed to fit, engineered, installed and operational within thirty (30) days. Fully operational was the challenge in order to meet the client’s shipping requirements.

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• With a substantial increase in the demand for SKU facing’s (for individual piece picking), this system was set up for a Customer that needed to better serve a chain of Stores.
• With an ever increasing SKU count, split case “pieces” or “eaches” needed to be pulled efficiently to fill orders sent to individual locations.
• The design focus was on the amount of SKU’s to be provided. Then, the higher activity SKU’s were identified and located in a designated “hot pick” zone.
• The design of this system re-utilized existing Customer components. Additional “used” materials were sourced to complete the finished system design.


• Again, being all the steel components were sourced as used material, the cross aisle deck or catwalk supports were fabricated from oversized pallet load beams. New 1 ¼” thick, moisture resistant, tongue & groove composition board made up the decking.
• Finally (not shown on the drawing) are:
– Sections of gravity conveyer that were installed on both the Top & Bottom levels for order building.
– For access to the upper level, a simple stair case was fitted.
– For completed or picked orders, a steel chute was fabricated. At the end of the chute an order accumulation “tub” or reservoir holds the items prior to shipping. And finally…
– For Code compliance, a single run of sprinkler and a row of lighting were installed under the solid decking.

Benefits to Customer

• The total number of SKU or pick faces was increased by 300% while requiring only a marginal amount of additional floor space.
• WCWC worked closely with this Customer on a solution that could be completed and operational in both a timely and cost effective manner.

Mezzanines – Are They An Option?

Is a Mezzanine a viable, cost effective alternative? A majority of Customer’s would believe that a Mezzanine is a very effective method or “tool” for addressing comparable multi-tiered picking methods. And that answer, in many cases, is “true.”

However, especially to those of you in USGS Seismic Zone 3 or 4 (basically, the majority of the entire West Coast of the United States), such free standing, load bearing structures are subject to scrutiny — of sometimes exhaustive — structural engineering analysis during the Permit process.

Are you experiencing challenges due to increased SKU counts and picking requirements?

Contact West Coast Warehouse Consultants today. WCWC can work with you to provide the most cost effective solution for your application.

Further, for many applications, WCWC is also available to show you a specific technology which will drastically increase your pick rates resulting in optimized labor efficiency.