The design layout of your commercial kitchen is of vital importance because it determines key aspects such as the efficiency of the working environment, the energy efficiency, the size of the kitchen, the ventilation and the ease of maintenance. The design of your commercial kitchen also determines where key kitchen installations such as water supply as well as drainage, gas supply, electrical wiring, and food preparation equipment should be. For this reason, whether you are redesigning your commercial kitchen or building a new one, you have to be extremely keen on your choice of layout. Here is a brief overview of some of the major commercial kitchen fitout options.
The Zone Layout
This design is exactly as the name suggests. Your kitchen installations will be placed in different sections. Food prep equipment such as work tables, storage equipment like refrigerators and ice machines, sanitation machines such as dishwashers, and cooking equipment such as ranges and fryers will each occupy their own section in the kitchen. In most cases, the major sections will be placed along the walls leaving a considerable amount of space at the centre for easy communication and supervision.
The Island Layout
As the name implies, the island layout places all the essential cooking equipment at the centre of your kitchen. The equipment may include among others, the ovens, grills, ranges and fryers. The middle section of the kitchen becomes one main block where all the cooking takes place. Other essential kitchen installations such as the tables where food preparation is done, the storage and receiving area, the cleaning and washing area and the service section, are placed along the perimeter of the kitchen walls. You can also choose the reverse arrangement. The island design layout tends to work well for large and square shaped kitchens. Its major advantage is that it creates a lot of open floor space that promotes easy communication and supervision.
The Assembly Line Layout
With this type of layout, everything flows in a line in a conveyor belt fashion. The typical arrangement of the kitchen installations in this layout design starts from the food storage to food preparation to the cooking area and finally to the service area. It is the ideal design if your kitchen produces the same kind of food but in large quantities. For instance, if you operate a sandwich shop or a pizza place, this would be the best design for you. For maximum efficiency, you can even have your storage and cleaning areas behind the assembly line to keep them out of the way of the key operations including food preparation, cooking and serving. Assembly line layouts offer excellent communication flow.