Capitalizing on the success of its original commercial laundry venture, K-Wash Linen Service, built in 2012 to service its AAA-rated four diamond Northern Quest Resort & Casino (NQRC) hospitality operations, the Kalispel Indian Tribe developed a significantly expanded laundry processing plant nearby. This new facility, opened in 2016, was built to service the growing regional healthcare industry.
The new multi-million-dollar, state-of-the-art commercial laundry, called Kalispel Linen Services, is located in a dedicated 32,000 square foot industrial building southwest of the busy Casino complex in Airway Heights, Washington, outside of Spokane. The new plant, designed and equipped by Western State Design (WSD) will allow for over 20 million of pounds of laundry to be processed each year, 15x more than K-Wash Linen Service. At the same time, the new plant will be much more water and energy efficient.
The new laundry facility not only continues to service busy NQRC, it has expanded its scope to other industries. For example, it has contracted to take over laundry services for all of the Providence Health Care facilities throughout the Spokane area, making it the largest healthcare laundry in Eastern Washington. The plan is for the laundry to continue to grow and broaden its commercial laundry customer base over time.
“The impetus to develop a modern facility to effectively handle the region’s healthcare industry’s laundry needs originated from the Kalispel Tribe’s beliefs in health and wellness,” according to Curtis Bash, Laundry Operations Manager for the Kalispel Tribal Economic Authority (KTEA) who oversaw the project.
WSD had been involved in developing the very successful original K-Wash Linen Service and, consequently, was brought in to help design and equip the new plant. WSD worked as a team with representatives from the manufacturers who supplied laundry equipment for the project to ensure smooth integration. In addition, a WSD project manager remained on site throughout the duration of the project which eased the construction process.
The industrial laundry equipment installed at the new Kalispel facility includes the following:
- (1) Milnor 8 Module Pulse Flow Batch Washer
- (1) Milnor 50 Bar Single Stage Press with RAM Control
- (1) Milnor Two-Cake Elevator
- (1) Milnor Two-Cake Elevating Shuttle
- (1) Milnor Multitrac Shuttle Dryer Controls
- (1) Milnor Railplan for Milnor Shuttle
- (5) Milnor 220-330 lb. Gas Heated Pass-Through Dryers
- (1) Milnor Dryvac Central Lint Collector
- (1) Milnor Emergency Backup Computer
- (1) Milnor Mildata
- (1) Chicago BB-13 Blanket Blaster
- (1) Chicago Edge Maxx CT Spreader/Feeder
- (1) Chicago S-17 Single Lane Primary Folder Cross Folder with Dual Stacker
- (2) Air Chicago XL CT Folder
- (1) E-Tech Semi-Automated Soil and Clean eRail Soil Delivery System
- (2) E-Tech Clean Belt Conveyors
- (1) E-Tech Electric Wind-Up Hoppers (1 Dual and 4 Single)
- (1) TEA Waste Water Heat Recovery System (TR-4)
- (1) TEA Stainless Steel Tempered Water 2,600 Gallon Storage Tank
- (1) TEA Triple Pumping – 10 HP
- (1) TEA Stainless Steel 1,950 Gallon Hot Water Storage Tank
- (1) TEA Immersion Water Heating System
- (1) Kibler Twin Alternating Duplex Water Softener
- (2) Parker Boiler 90 HP Natural Gas Heated Steam Boiler Package (LEAD-LAG)
- (1) Ingersoll Rand 75 HP Air Compressor
“WSD specializes in the design of large-scale, state-of-the art industrial laundry facilities,” according Rick Hall, the WSD Laundry Specialist who oversaw both projects. “These facilities are designed with a huge focus on saving water and utilities. For example, the Milnor Pulse Tunnel uses less than .6 gallons of water per lb. of laundry compared to the old system which used 2.5. gallons,” he added. “In addition, given our many years of experience implementing similar types of high volume solutions, we were able to get the new Kalispel plant up and running within the required timeframe and budget,” he continued.
“One of the reasons we decided to work with WSD again is they have a lot of knowledge about the laundry industry and provide superior service,” said Bash. They also make it easy to quickly source replacement parts, which is important for a busy facility such as this one,” he continued.
In addition to providing a growing, dependable income stream to the tribe, the new laundry business has created a significant number of new local jobs.