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Bismark Construction lends its education expertise to a renovation-turned-rebuild in Bridgeport, Conn.

By Chris Petersen

The community of Bridgeport, Conn., found itself in a delicate situation in 2012 as it prepared to renovate Longfellow Elementary School. As school district officials started work on renovating the 54-year-old structure, they discovered that the site was contaminated with hazardous chemicals. The unexpected discovery forced the district to put the brakes on the renovation project and change gears.

Rather than a renovation, the community now faced a complete demolition and rebuild of the school building. To help it navigate the project, the school district sought the expertise of Bismark Construction, a regional expert in school construction and other construction management projects.

The first piece of a project said to be the largest privately funded real estate development in United States history is nearing completion. Construction manager Tutor Perini in October topped off 10 Hudson Yards, a 52-story, 1.7-million-square foot office building on the far west side of Manhattan along the Hudson River. 

The company is performing interior finishes including completing the building’s lobby and elevators, and is placing a 150-foot-high steel crown on the top of the building. The building will open its doors at the end of the first quarter of 2016, Tutor Perini Vice President Joe Perini says. 

In only three years, The Bowa Group has gone from being the new kid on the block to earning a reputation as a reliable general contracting and construction management firm. “People are starting to know who we are,” President and CEO Nosa C. Ehimwenman says. “We’re bringing a positive new energy, new approaches and new technologies in the market in Chicago.”

Ehimwenman founded the company in 2009 after spending 11 years at Gilbane Building Co. At the time, “I saw an opportunity in the market for a qualified, reputable African American-owned construction management and general contracting firm,” he recalls. “I took a leap of faith and started the company.”

R.C. Stevens Construction Co. takes care of its people – both clients and employees – and has stood by them for the 90 years it has been in business. In that time, the company has established itself as a dependable, knowledgeable and enthusiastic company that gets the job done, working in many industries throughout the Southeast such as industrial, healthcare and commercial. 

The citrus market used to be R.C. Stevens’ bread and butter, but the company has had to shift to other sectors because Florida’s harvests have declined in recent years. The company is instead focused on one of R.C. Stevens’ biggest clients, Coca-Cola, and is working in facilities located in Auburndale, Jacksonville, Orlando and Tampa, Fla. Additionally, the company is working on facilities for the increasingly sophisticated poultry industry.

McCarthy Building Companies opened its southeast division in Atlanta 10 years ago, shortly after the company completed a project for the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Specifically, McCarthy was the general contractor for the CDC’s Building 18, a 12-story, 450,000-square-foot emerging infectious disease laboratory.

The biosafety Level-4 (BSL-4) laboratory is used by CDC researchers to study and develop responses to many of the world’s most infectious diseases. BSL-4 facilities have the highest level of containment of any laboratories. The building also has an attached five-story facility and includes biosafety Level-2 and 3 laboratories, offices, analytical equipment labs, molecular biology suites and a central glass-washing facility. CDC researchers work on infectious agents such as HIV and tuberculosis and study acute infectious diseases as part of the government’s bioterrorism preparedness program.

Mammoth Inc. Construction prides itself on being able to build nearly anything, but it’s the artistic projects that get owner Arthur F. McCarthy the most excited. The Staten Island-based general contractor has constructed everything from castles to Chinese gardens at the Snug Harbor Botanical Garden and an underground otter exhibit for the Staten Island Zoo. McCarthy enjoys those types of projects because they allow him to work closely with architects and bring out his creative side. 

Arthur F. McCarthy has enjoyed the design side of construction since college, when he used to fill his college schedule with architecture classes. One of the highlights of McCarthy’s career was winning an award in 2012 from the Staten Island Chamber of Commerce for the Tiki Island outdoor patio bar, a project where Mammoth served not only as the general contractor, but also as the designer. The bar features authentic Polynesian huts, furniture built from scratch, a white sandy beach and concrete floors colored to look like the ocean. “On this project, everything was actually my creation so it was kind of my baby,” Arthur F. McCarthy says.

In the months after Hurricane Sandy ravaged the Eastern Seaboard, residents looked for hope that their lives would return to normal. It was contractors like Bayport, N.Y.’s Lipsky Enterprises that made that possible.

The destruction at the residence of William and Betty Younkins was like that of many homes in the New York area. The structure was badly damaged from flooding and needed to be lifted to guard against future hurricanes. But the project presented an extra challenge due to the couples’ age. The Younkins are an elderly couple and required additional considerations for handicapped access. 

EllisDon Corp. is the construction manager overseeing the construction of a world-class research station in the High Arctic for the Government of Canada. The Canadian High Arctic Research Station will provide a year-round presence in the region and deliver cutting-edge research, including environmental and resource development issues. Just shy of latitude 70 in Cambridge Bay, Nunavut, the Canadian High Arctic Research Station sits on the Northwest Passage, and it is expected to demonstrate the impacts of climate change over the course of the next century. 

“It’s closer to the North Pole than it is to Ottawa, Canada’s capital,” EllisDon Senior Project Manager Norm Lauzon notes. “In a nutshell, there are four buildings on the campus, including two small triplex residential structures, a field and maintenance building and the main research building for an investment of $142.4 million for construction, equipment and fit-up.”

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