There are plenty of large general contractors around San Diego that participate in the competitive Southern California market. However, national players in the area don’t boast the depth of local expertise nor the ability to self-perform as much work as Pacific Building Group, which has been a mainstay in the San Diego construction industry since Greg Rogers founded the company in 1984.
“I think one of the things that distinguishes us from the competition is we’re one of the largest local contractors in San Diego even with a lot of regional offices like Turner and Hensel Phelps,” Rogers says. “The other thing is we self-perform drywall and steel studs, so we’re more of a builder than a general construction manager. We have crews that perform on the projects as well as being the general contractor on the job.”
Rogers founded the company as a one-man operation focusing on small tenant improvement jobs. Today, Pacific Building Group is a general contractor with 200 employees that specializes in commercial construction across five divisions: core and shell, tenant improvements, healthcare, facilities maintenance, and drywall. Through these five divisions, Rogers says Pacific Building Group provides preconstruction services, design/build, general contracting, medical office buildings, hospital and acute care and LEED construction.
Rogers says general contracting and tenant improvement jobs account for 70 percent of the company’s project mix. The other 30 percent consists of medical-related work, such as hospitals and laboratory facilities. The company has focused on healthcare for more than 10 years and adapted to meet the specialized requirements within this sector. The strategy behind the company’s steady growth was to not chase trends in certain markets such as military or higher education, but to continue to develop the five-tiered platform of services that could withstand the economic fluctuations.
“The new ground-up office building market is almost nonexistent as the market certainly has slowed almost to a stop,” Rogers says. “What we’re seeing in the market is healthcare continues to grow, and manufacturing is showing a little bit of signs of rejuvenation, especially in the Southern California market. Improvement continues to be steady, but the market as a whole remains flat.”
Pacific Building Group has seen so much new business in a variety of markets recently that the company has been forced to increase its staffing levels to keep up with the demand for its services. Rogers says the company’s workforce grew by 25 to 30 percent in 2012. The company’s technical capabilities were enhanced through strategic hires within each division.
“Medical nationwide is one of the largest growing sectors regardless of the economy,” Rogers says.
Pacific Building Group has worked with Sony for more than 20 years throughout southern California. In 2009 as part of a joint venture, Pacific Building Group delivered its largest project for the longtime client.
The company partnered with Sundt Construction to build Sony’s U.S. headquarters, an 11-story office building providing executive office and employee work areas, multiple amenities and collaborative space throughout 450,000 square feet. The Sony project achieved LEED Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.
Rogers says the sheer magnitude of the project was the most complex element of the Sony headquarters, especially when building a structure of this size on a constrained site in just 18 months. Pacific Building Group quickly learned how to streamline operations with so many parties involved, thanks in large part to the skill of its partners.
“We learned how to seamlessly integrate the work with the architect and the owner to streamline the project and meet the required deadlines in order to deliver the building on time,” he says.
Courtesy of Construction Today
By Brian Salgado
February, 21, 2013
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