Case Study

Warehouse vertical storage utilized at Homans Associates

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mpe060-080vg-ps-150.pngHomans Associates needed assistance with maximizing its newly found vertical storage when they moved from a 45,000-square-foot facility with low ceilings to a 90,000-square-foot warehouse with increased vertical space.

William P. Homans, of Canton, Mass., founded Homans Associates after World War II. Homans began by selling and installing aluminum insulation used for walk-in deep freeze refrigerators and cold storage warehouses. Today, Homans is headquartered in Wilmington, Mass., and is a full-service distributor of virtually all products and equipment related to heating, ventilating, air conditioning and industrial insulation.

In business since 1969, NITCO is New England’s largest materials handling dealership. With seven locations in four New England states, NITCO is the leading dealer of new and used Hyster® and Yale® brand lift trucks.


Homans moved from a 45,000-square-foot, low ceiling facility in Somerville, Mass., to a 90,000-square-foot, 25-foot ceiling warehouse in Wilmington, Mass., in 1995. Homans not only wanted to utilize its square footage, but also its cubic footage to maximize storage capabilities. In order to build its storage vertically, Homans reached out to John Bradley and Alan Hammersley at NITCO in early 1996.


Bradley and Hammersley visited Homans’ Wilmington facility and provided the layout, design and development for all of the warehouse’s systems. Taking into consideration the warehouse’s 25-foot ceilings, NITCO supplied 16- to 18-foot upright shelving systems to provide greater vertical product storage.

In order for Homans’ Yale® OSO30E order selectors to pick from both sides of their 100-foot aisles and 20 feet vertically into the air, NITCO designed 51-inch and 60-inch aisles. The narrow aisles helped to maximize square-foot and cubicfoot storage of more products in a given space.

To accommodate Homans’ three Yale® MPE060 end riders and ERC050VG electric lift trucks, NITCO laid out 12- to 14-foot aisles in another section of the facility. In total, Homans leases 15 Yale lift trucks from NITCO for its Wilmington facility.


The ability to pick from both sides of the truck, packaging the product immediately and continuing on to the next order significantly increased Homans’ productivity and revenue.

All of Homans’ 13 additional locations, ranging from 5,000 to 43,000 square feet, utilize Yale lift truck products.

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