Institutional

LeaseLease Crutcher Lewis’s work revitalizes the heart of the University of Oregon’s campus.

By Chris Petersen

Students returning to the campus of the University of Oregon this fall will benefit from an extensive renovation project being completed by leading general contractor Lease Crutcher Lewis. The company is putting the finishing touches on a $95 million expansion of the university’s Erb Memorial Union, which will provide students with expanded space to meet and collaborate as well as provide expanded space for conferences and other events.

Barton MalowBarton Malow has an environmental focus at the University of Maryland.

By Tim O’Connor

On the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) campus, just a few feet away from the footprint of the school’s new event center, is a massive pile of dirt crews affectionately call “Mt. Charles,” named for the 72-year-old excavator who put it there earlier this year. “When you start naming them, you know the dirt’s been around too long,” says Steve Herckner, senior project manager for Barton Malow, the construction manager-at-risk on the project.

Big D pic

Big-D Construction delivers a standout arts center project for Southern Utah University.

By Chris Petersen

As the new home of the Southern Utah Museum of Art and the Utah Shakespeare Festival on the campus of Southern Utah University, the Beverley Taylor Sorenson Center for the Arts will be home to some very impressive productions. Perhaps fittingly, the new facility has been a very impressive production in its own right, and the expertise of Big-D Construction has been instrumental in ensuring that the curtain goes up without a hitch. Vice President and Project Director Jim Allison says the project is a unique addition to the company’s portfolio, and should stand as a testament to the power of public-private partnerships for decades to come.

Weitz CompanyThe Weitz Company delivered a unique project on the University of Denver campus.

By Chris Petersen

When The Weitz Company acquired Al Cohen Construction in 1986, it brought a wealth of experience in the Colorado market under its umbrella. Already a consistent fixture in the Midwest construction market since 1855, The Weitz Company entered the Colorado market shortly before the acquisition and has been there ever since.

Today, The Weitz Company is one of the largest and most respected builders in Colorado, and the company continues to burnish its reputation with high-profile projects like the one it recently completed on the campus of the University of Denver. Executive Vice President Troy Garrett says the company’s work on the Anna and John J. Sie International Relations Complex is another example of the company’s dedication to the finest possible construction.

Portzen picPortzen Construction prides itself on its ability to self-perform most aspects of a project.

By Tim O’Connor

Mike Portzen’s first job was at a supermarket, where he learned two facts about running a business that have stuck with him throughout his life: The client is always right and always greet the customer with a smile on your face. Portzen has instilled those lessons in his general contractor business, Dubuque, Iowa-based Portzen Construction Inc. “We always get comments about how our employees treat the customer and affiliates,” Portzen says, adding that respect drives respect. “I think if you treat your employees that way they will treat their people that way.”

Portzen founded the construction firm in 1983 with a few employees and incorporated six years later. The company began its life doing housing rehabilitation projects, but has since morphed into a general contractor capable of a wide range of jobs, from high school football stadiums to swimming pools, streetscapes and waste-water treatment facilities.

RuconRucon Inc.’s construction management approach makes it a valuable partner to contractors as well as to its school district clients.
By Jim Harris

Dennis Russo’s more than 30 years of construction industry experience have given him a strong sense of what he feels is the most effective way to lead a project.

“During the years I was building schools [for a general contractor] as a site superintendent, I watched how construction managers went about their work,” he says. “I noticed they liked to separate prime contractors from the owners and the architects and required all of the general contractors they worked with to coordinate everything through them – I saw that as a problem.”

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