Construction Today 2018 - Volume 16, Issue 3 - 31
The company has performed work
on assisted living, multifamily and
square feet of framing, for a residential
apartment complex. The project began in
November 2016 and was the city's only
five-story wood frame construction project. It
took the company nine months to complete.
The company is also completing 160,000
square feet of framing for a 235-unit
apartment building at 234 Market Avenue
in Grand Rapids. "We've almost doubled
our sales every year since we started,"
Sweers says. "This year it's plateauing and
the bigger projects have been built, but
there's still a lot out there. Grand Rapids is
growing because of the colleges and medical industry, so more apartment complexes
are going up and the inner city is going to
get more developed."
Safety and Technology
Fair and Square Construction
maintains close relationships
with general contractors.
at Bridge Street and Stocking Avenue NW
in Grand Rapids, Mich., for a Rockford
Construction mixed-use project. The $60
million "super block" development will
include a market on the ground level. Fair
and Square Construction oversaw the framing of the four stories of market rate and
affordable apartments that will sit above
the grocery store.
After more than three decades in the
commercial business, Brigham and Sweers
say they have developed best practices
to tackle the challenging logistics of each
project. "Because of the height and lack
of lay-down area, it took a lot of logistical
planning to stay on schedule," Brigham
says. "It's downtown Grand Rapids and
everything we do is during regular daytime
hours, so controlling our orders is key. We
know the construction companies that
makes our prefabricated panels and are on a
first-name basis with them and the drivers,
so everything is just in time into the air."
Fair and Square Construction prides itself
on building Grand Rapids' largest wood
frame structure, which totaled 325,000
Fair and Square Construction focuses on
safety on its jobsites. "We bought two telescopic boom lifts about a year-and-a-half ago
to provide for safer working conditions on
the exterior and for fall protection," Sweers
says. "We made a big investment in safety
to put up guard rails, close off windows and
keep everyone off ladders and scaffolding
with the diesel-powered boom lift. We also
hired a private safety contractor and developed a detailed fall protection plan."
The company prides itself on training its
staff "every chance it gets," Brigham says.
For example, Fair and Square Construction
employees are trained regularly on heavy
equipment and tools, as well as in first aid,
OSHA and CPR.
Fair and Square Construction invested in
tablets and walkie-talkies to ensure its employees are all on the same page, stay safe
and can stay in constant communication.
"Our guys on the ground can talk to the
crane guy or the guys up in the air regarding deliveries and are crucial on the bigger
jobs," Brigham says.
Moving forward, Fair and Square Construction says it plans to continue to stay
focused on work in western Michigan, but
may consider traveling to perform framing
projects for its general contractors. "We are
at the right place at the right time and we do
our jobs well," Sweers says. "We cover about
one-third of the state and we see there will
always being enough work."
VOLUME 16, ISSUE 3 CONSTRUCTION-TODAY.COM