PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) - It may not look like much, but a big warehouse on the westside of Phoenix could hold the key to more Arizonans getting a COVID-19 vaccine.
Stephen Dudley, with the Phoenix Planning and Development Department, said they recently teamed up with a company called Langham Logistics to refurbish and retrofit the warehouse, so they can store large quantities of the COVID-19 vaccine that will then be dispersed around the state.
"Facilities like this are specialized because of cold temperatures," said Dudley. "To be able to get a location like this was really important to provide for storage and distribution of vaccines."
Erica Ewing with Langham Logistics said they've created an area to accommodate 15 freezers needed to store the vaccines that require extremely cold temperatures.
"With our colder environment, our fridge and ULT freezer, they have to go through a qualification period that can range from two to three days, just to ensure that everything is operating as expected," said Ewing.
The freezers for the COVID-19 vaccine will be similar to the ones HonorHealth and other agencies are using.
Ewing said the new freezers should be delivered within the next couple of weeks.
"Fingers crossed - everything goes according to plan," said Ewing. "Once we get those freezers in here and get them qualified, we are hoping to be able to bring vaccines in here so we can help distribute them to the community."
The City of Phoenix has also set up a COVID-19 research lab and an N95 mask manufacturing facility.