Capacity study for Heathrow Consolidation Centre

The challenge

Serving Heathrow Airport, the Heathrow Consolidation Centre (HCC) receives retail goods from multiple suppliers and consolidates them onto a single fleet for delivery to over 284 stores across the airport terminals.

The Heathrow retail logistics team wished to conduct a capacity review of the consolidation centre to understand the life of the facility, determine whether the most suitable equipment was being employed, and identify and assess any opportunities for operational changes required to support the findings.


Our role

A number of site visits observing different aspects of peak times across the 24 hour operation enabled the o&i team to gain a good understanding of the consolidation centre. These visits gave us the opportunity to assess the live operation, site infrastructure and capacity, equipment, and key functional areas of the facility as well as retail deliveries to the terminals

Based on our research and data supplied by the facility operator, our operational research team developed a capacity assessment model for each of the key operating areas at the HCC. We looked specifically at a peak operating day to understand if capacity constraints existed, when capacity would be exceeded and which production areas were affected.

As part of the project scope, the retail logistics team asked us to identify and operational change requirements  to help relieve any constraints and enhance performance both within the consolidation centre and in terminal. Utilising the capacity model, we quantified how optimisation opportunities would extend the life of existing facilities.

The study determined that with minor operational changes the Heathrow Consolidation Centre would have sufficient capacity to operate until the end of the current lease. o&i consulting provided the client with a set of recommended next steps and a timeline to achieve relevant changes and improvements.


o&i expertise

  • Operations assessment and observation
  • Process improvement
  • Industrial engineering expertise
  • Capacity analysis and modelling
  • Operational research expertise
  • Logistics expertise
  • Reporting


Project Key Facts

Title: Capacity study for Heathrow Consolidation Centre

Client: Heathrow Airport

Theme: Airport Logistics