Smart logistics meets historic architecture
Every year, about 30 million foreign mailings reach their recipients via the Swiss Post. Foreign goods must also be cleared through customs in the special security area of the customs office. Gilgen Logistics and Grenzebach join their forces to automate the intralogistics of the Swiss Post and customs in the letter center Zurich-Mülligen. Thanks to the automated guided vehicle system from Grenzebach, the post and customs can now handle small consignments even more efficiently, flexibly and sustainably. The automated guided vehicles (AGV) are used on specifically installed intermediate floors in the listed building of the Swiss Post.
"No day is like the other with the amount of mail reaching the sorting center every day. A standard logistics system would quickly fall short or be hopelessly overburdened", explains Renzo Pedretti, Head of Letter Center International at Swiss Post. Gilgen Logistics developed and supplied the overall concept. Incoming mail from the weekends is prepared for optimal further processing.
"The logistical restructuring of the intralogistics for the letter center in Zurich-Mülligen was an exciting and challenging task for us. We found a partner in Grenzebach, who is also continuously working on developing the world of intralogistics", says Daniel Gilgen, Head of Systems Business Division and deputy CEO of Gilgen Logistics.
German automation specialist Grenzebach supplied the infrastructure to interlink the two separate working areas. Part of the intralogistics solution are automated guided vehicles and the Fleet Manager, which is connected to the Warehouse Management System of the international letter center and controls the travel commands between the spatially separated partners.
Putting existing buildings in urban areas to their optimal use can be attractive for numerous reasons. Our customer Gilgen Logistics was looking for a solution to organize the routes of consignments between Swiss Post and customs intelligently and efficiently in a listed building with columns, shafts and limited space.
Overcoming spatial and logistical challenges
For security reasons, customs must be spatially separated from postal service. Customs employees also work from Monday to Friday; the staff of the Swiss Post is busy around the clock, seven days a week. Daniel Gilgen adds: "In addition, the existing building has numerous columns and shafts which pose an additional challenge which had to overcome." A mezzanine was installed due to the tight space available. On top of this, the AGV L600 from Grenzebach transport the pallet boxes to their destinations.
“The solution provided by Gilgen Logistics for the Swiss Post is a great example of a modern utilization concept of existing buildings. Our AGVs are ideal for Brownfield projects of this kind because they can be used even with very restricted room heights. We will continue developing solutions along these lines and thus contribute to the further use of existing buildings in various industries or support the recycling of buildings”, says Alexander Gebelien, Key Account Manager 3PL and eCommerce at Grenzebach
„“The logistical use of existing buildings in urban areas already offers many advantages that will only increase in the future. Businesses are increasingly moving closer to their customers to shorten the last mile. This is possible only through intralogistics systems, such as the Swiss Post ones, accomplished by the successful cooperation with Grenzebach. For us, this is a milestone for the future of intralogistics”, says Rudolf Steffen, Head of Project Management at Gilgen Logistics.