Joy Cone - Fabcon Precast

THIS IS JOY CONE –
HERMITAGE, PA

The roots of Joy Cone Company started back in 1918 when Lebanese immigrant Albert George and a few family members bought secondhand cone-baking machines.

Their humble beginnings as the George and Thomas Cone Company with pre-owned machines eventually grew into the largest ice cream cone company in the world to date. Joy Cone is an independent, 100% employee-owned company that bakes over 1.5 billion cones a year.

Their new production line dedicated to wafers, specialty cones, and ice cream additions required a brand-new facility. With DPH Architects and RIEN Construction, Joy Cone made the move into their 150,000-square-foot cookie plant in Hermitage, PA.

Joy Cone is an independent, 100% employee-owned company that bakes over 1.5 billion cones a year.

“All attention in the new plant will be on developing brand new products,” said David George, Joy Cone President and CEO.

Joy Cone needed a facility large enough to produce and distribute new products in a temperature-safe environment as well as accommodate their 250-foot-long oven and cooling conveyor.  Fabcon’s load-bearing panels eliminated the need for perimeter columns, therefore creating more usable space. 12” panels were used for thermal performance.

“To get an R-value approaching R-30 with masonry would have been expensive, time consuming, and ugly,” stated Mark McSweeney, Sales Engineer at Fabcon Precast. “But the owners liked the look of masonry. So we needed to figure out how to make the building mimic the aesthetic of split-based block.”

The 82,000 square feet of precast in exposed brick, standard rake, and broom finishes bridged the gap between split-based rock and precast. Fabcon made sure that the cookie plant met the vision and aesthetic that Joy Cone wanted while also achieving their time, size, and temperature requirements.

Joy Cone front entrance with flag

Fabcon made sure that the cookie plant met the vision and aesthetic that Joy Cone wanted while also achieving their time, size, and temperature requirements.

Meeting both visual and practical requirements is no stranger to Fabcon. “Fabcon practices Functional Aesthetics™. We believe that appearance doesn’t have to be sacrificed for performance,” said McSweeney. “Joy Cone used to love split-block. But Fabcon changed their mind.”

The $22 million expansion started during the winter. If the owners of Joy Cone had built with masonry, construction would have required a larger team, more time in the cold, and a big mess. McSweeney described Fabcon as “clean and stealthy.” The building was erected in about XX days. The same project with masonry would have been a 60-day process, and the extra team members and gear would have been extremely disruptive.

Joy Cone’s mission has always been to make ice cream cones better than any other company. With their new precast facility, they can expand their philosophy to whatever other product they add to their repertoire. Since its completion in September 2018, the cookie plant has been a host for hard work, happy employees, family ties, and 100 years of delicious tradition.

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