Message from Sweetwater President: Re-start of Construction
To Team Sweetwater, regarding start of all construction, from Ron Witt, President & CEO:
As we begin the transition of various businesses reopening, I continue to be impressed with the dynamic abilities of our great company. Each and every one of you has risen to the challenge and fought to keep us going. It has not been easy, but we are stronger as a result. While we still have hard work in front of us, know that I would go to battle with each of you at my side. The virus threw everything at us and we did not blink! I am proud of every member of our team. Let’s keep up the fight; we now have tangible evidence that we ARE prevailing!!!
Continue to be safe, be well, and be SWEETWATER STRONG!!
ABC-NJ 2019 Excellence in Construction Awards Once again, Sweetwater has been recognized by the Associated Builders & Contractors of New Jersey for quality in merit shop construction. The organization distinguishes projects that are distinguishable for features, complexities, innovations and cost-effectiveness based on expertise.
“Best of the Best” (Eagle Award) for an Institutional project went to our Trinity Hall High School Addition project! Phase 2 of the master plan was the construction of a formidable addition, to transform the building it into a premier preparatory high school. The client entity included the school headmaster and board members, who themselves were tasked with overseeing a construction project that absolutely needed to finish on time and on budget. Sweetwater was awarded Phase 2 based on our precious success in Phase 1, and competitive pricing. We committed to deliver the same cost and schedule accomplishments, and team members, for a January 2019 grand opening celebration and new semester.
The entire Team gets an “A” for a positive commitment to working together respectfully and delivering an academic building that impresses all who enter.
A Merit Award was bestowed on the IT Cosmetics headquarters renovation in Jersey City. Operating on the 9th and 10th floors of an occupied, waterfront hi-rise presented the need for creative logistics, material movement, and debris elimination. Because the client’s beauty industry demands perfection in its visuals, there was an expectation that their newest environment should reflect the same. The myriad of client entities and specialty consultants, along with the glossy designs and shimmering finishes, required careful attention to construction detail, with coordination and precision in the work itself. The Sweetwater team managed and executed all changes and challenges with professionalism and skill, making this makeover a winner for everyone involved!
The ENR New York Top Contractors list, published annually, has Sweetwater Construction Corp. at No. 44 (55 companies reporting) for general contractors, both publicly and privately held, based on a 2018 calendar year construction contracting-specific revenue of $75.91 million. This figure is for work contracted in New York and New Jersey.
As a Construction Manager and General Contractor, Sweetwater’s assignments are new buildings, additions, reconstruction, and renovations for Corporate, Healthcare, Technology, Retail, Senior Living, and Multi-family clients. This work is done primarily around New Jersey, with a deep familiarity of local townships, and state code and regulations.
The firm’s year was highlighted by such projects as Solaris Lofts apartments and IT Cosmetics in Jersey City, the Residences at Renaissance Square in Evesham, Trinity Hall High School in Tinton Falls, Millburn Self Storage, and Prime Healthcare in several locations.
Sweetwater Completes 1st of a Series of Self-Storage Facilities – The 3-story, 104,000 square-foot ExtraSpace Storage facility in Millburn, NJ was unveiled in December. The new structure, owned by The Hampshire Cos., was constructed on a concrete foundation and mat slab, with conventional steel grid. The exterior is an insulated metal panel system. It contains 760 units of 11 different proportions, non-conditioned and climate-controlled, and fire-proofed. The scope included demolition, sitework, fencing, and security gates.
The collaboration and effort of the entire team was lauded by the client and another facility is in preconstruction with Sweetwater for March 2019.
Four 2018 ABC Excellence in Construction Awards for Sweetwater – This Associated Builders & Contractors (ABC) event, held annually at The Borgata in Atlantic City, brings together general contractors and subcontractors to celebrate Merit Shop construction in New Jersey.
ABC believes in free enterprise, open competition, and fair play for construction employers and employees. They support members with the pursuit of legislation to back those beliefs, while providing resources and education for a sound construction industry.
An ABC member for 28 years, Sweetwater has again received the highest level honor for safety, and awards for all four projects submitted. Projects are graded on success and innovation in planning, execution, collaboration, safety, impact and team references.
The Cambridge Club of Aberdeen received a Merit Award for Commercial Facility under $5mm. This rescue and recovery project, with Fabiano Designs, finally brought a long-awaited social and fitness facility to the community.
The Eagle Award is the top honor for each category, and was received for the Institute for Advanced Study Faculty Townhomes, L’Oreal USA R&D, and Saint Clare’s Imaging Suites. Click on the links to view more details on these significant jobs for NJ Merit Shop construction.
IAS Faculty Townhomes are high-end units designed by Studio Hillier and constructed for faculty adjacent to the Institute in Princeton. The L’Oreal USA R&D renovation included office and labs with diverse finishes and elaborate architectural elements by Ware Malcomb. Multiple locations for the Saint Clare’s Health System speak to our specialty healthcare construction expertise and the client’s satisfaction with Sweetwater. These imaging suites were designed by Posen Architects.
Our proud winning project teams enjoyed the dinner, presentation and an evening at The Borgata! Thank you and congratulations to our clients, architects, engineers and subcontractors, as well.
Growing to Learn at Trinity Hall – Our Latest Email Blast https://conta.cc/2JyflCN In 2017, as part of the Fort Monmouth Reuse and Redevelopment Plan, and Trinity Hall’s master plan, Sweetwater turned an existing 20,000 square-foot structure into an all-girls college preparatory high school. The renovation created bright classrooms, state-of-the-art science labs, student common areas and offices, supported with all new mechanical, electrical, plumbing and sprinkler systems.
Sweetwater was chosen to continue with the building program and we are proud to have been given the assignment of creating this exceptional learning environment.
The next exciting phase, in progress, is a 2-story, 20,000 square-foot addition that will bring an inviting entrance to the school and include more classrooms, innovation and design spaces, offices, chapel, student changing rooms and lockers, along with enhanced parking and grounds.
Sweetwater Continues to Ride Multifamily Wave – According to Dodge Report, for the first half of 2018 NY Metro Commercial and Multifamily Construction is #1 in US, and multifamily housing, in particular, is up 22% from 2017. Sweetwater is presently engaged in the construction of 470 units in 3 locations around New Jersey.
With another 2 in preconstruction, and 3 others finished recently, Sweetwater’s general construction teams have been busy with multifamily development all over New Jersey. The latest project completed is a bank of 8 faculty townhomes for the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton.
In Evesham, Sweetwater is engaged as Construction Manager for the construction of 5 apartment buildings totaling 433,000 square feet of living space. The Residences at Renaissance Square is a development that includes the renovation of an adjacent shopping center with more than 950 parking spaces for residents and retail.
In Jersey City, a 5-story structure containing 4 stories of residential units, a grade level of amenities and underground parking is being built by Sweetwater. The Pine Street Lofts apartments will boast a mix of unit types and a roof terrace.
The Cobalt Apartments in downtown Somerville were completed in 2017 by Sweetwater and client, Weiss Properties. This was the 2nd multifamily project Sweetwater has completed for Weiss. With a focus on the revitalization and redevelopment of Somerville as a transit village, a third project – The Davenport – will break ground in October. It will have 60 units and multiple amenities in a 5-story building with 68 underground parking spaces.
“We expect the boom in Sweetwater’s multifamily construction business will continue for the next several years”, says Gary Coopersmith, Sweetwater’s EVP of Business Development and Preconstruction. “A January 2017 ruling by the NJ Supreme Court states that townships can no longer reject applications from developers to build affordable housing. The towns had successfully fought this requirement for several years, creating a backlog of needs for more affordable housing. Now they are compelled by the courts to allow new construction of multifamily complexes. With 20 percent of apartment units needing to be designed as affordable, there is a multiplier effect on the total backlog for some years to come.”
See NJ.com’s article, N.J. Needs to Build 155,000 Affordable Housing Units, for more information on this subject.
Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) Releases 2018 Safety Performance Report
The ABC report is created from data submitted by participants in the 2017 Safety Training Evaluation Process (STEP) which uses OSHA 300A figures and self-assessment of leading indicator safe practices. That data is processed with specific U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) information to produce the report which substantiates the success of commitment, and the deployment of leading core indicators.
The ABC STEP program promotes better safety and risk management by analysis, best practices, and benchmarking year after year. Sweetwater has been an avid STEP participant for 28 years and has attained Diamond Level status. Our deep-rooted culture of safety is anchored with a dedicated Environment, Health & Safety department, layers of safety and risk management oversite, collaboration with our insurance company, and buy-in from our employees and subcontractors.
ABC’s report shows that STEP Diamond contractors are 670% safer than the BLS average. To review this report, click here. For more on Sweetwater’s program, visit our Safety page.
Sweetwater Has Right Ingredients for Technology Client Renovation. Sweetwater’s expertise in laboratory and technology construction aided in the successful relocation renovation for Phoenix Chemical, a chemical technology company that develops products for the cosmetic, personal care and OTC pharmaceutical industries. 14,300 square feet of space resulted in offices, warehouse and process areas (organic synthesis lab, polymer lab, kilo lab, instrument lab, wet lab, applications lab, sample lab, raw material storage and pail-off room). Lab requirements included 3 RTUs, lab case work, 9 lab hoods and exhausts, and lab gases (nitrogen, hydrogen, helium and vacuum) accessible from all lab benches and lab hoods.
The Cobalt Wins Somerset County Land Development and Planning Award! In step with Somerville’s commitment to revitalization and redevelopment as a Transit Village, Sweewater Construction built this new 4-story, 175,000 square-foot multi-family development for Weiss Properties. The building contains studio, one and two-bedroom apartments in a downtown section that was vacant for 20 years. An attached 2-story parking garage holds 109 parking spaces. The project, within walking distance to the train, included a complete site development plan. For more on the award, go to the Tap into article at http://bit.ly/2CoBPm9.