A Decade Ago… Things were Very Different
Just pulling up this picture at the Oval from 2011 brings back memories. Everyone looks so young! Look at Paul and Chris! Neil! Rick’s babyface!
There’s Shawn and Bryan and… wait, is that Jimmer over there with that smoldering look in the lower left hand corner?
There’s been so much that’s happened for all of us personally since then. Many of us became parents, or grew our families.
Many of us got married. Some in this picture moved on to other companies. Many are still here.
Think about the landscape of commercial concrete construction in 2010-2011, or the landscape of America in general. It’s hard to imagine that just 10 years ago, the world was still reeling from the greatest economic collapse since the Great Depression.
One of the hardest industries hit by the recession in 2008 was construction.
One of the most visible signs where you can tell a recession has got bad is just looking at half-finished building projects. This is going to take a little bit of a think, but it’s not hard to make the connection.
While the subprime mortgage crisis definitely hit the residential construction market like a bull in a china shop, that wasn’t the only problem. One of the things that hit the construction industry hardest was the “credit crunch” which turned into a “credit freeze.”
When you as an individual freeze your credit, it’s usually something you’d do in the case of fraud. If banks freeze their credit, people can’t get loans to finance their projects. If they can’t get the money to finance the project, or if they have a real estate investment portfolio that’s going belly-up, they don’t pay their contractors. If they don’t pay their contractors… the contractors can’t pay their workers. And if the workers aren’t getting paid… they aren’t working.
Or the contractor needs to take out a loan to pay the workers while the project is ongoing, knowing that they’ll get paid at the end of the project to finance the loan. When credit freezes, they can’t get that money and thus they can’t pay their workers and once again, construction stops.
And that’s when you see half-finished projects. A commercial asphalt parking lot only half done. You see a parking facility or a parking garage only half poured.
You see job sites that are just empty even though it’s in the middle of the construction season. It was hard to watch and hard to keep the faith that those projects would ever get done or that the American economy would come roaring back.
Goodmanson Construction: Surviving and Thriving
We made it through. We navigated the ensuing years and went through some changes ourselves. We had to adapt to a new economic reality. Now, 10 years on, we’re in a better place than we’ve ever been before.
When you think about the devastation that a lot of people experience in the past decade from the 2008 collapse, you can’t feel good about taking a “victory lap” because you made it out without contracting your business. It was hard for us too.
No matter who it is, we like to see people at work. A rising tide lifts all boats, as they say. Or “we all do better when we all do better” to quote a famous Minnesotan politician.
We made it through, and we owe our survival to not only the hard work we put in, but because of the faith our customers continually put in us and the reputation we’ve gained in the market for consistently delivering the best quality concrete, asphalt and excavation projects in the metro area.
We like to say that our business was built on developing concrete relationships.
It’s not just a tag line. It’s how we live. It’s not just the strength of our projects but the strength of our relationships that brought us through the last decade. Through the recession to seeing unprecedented growth both in our industry and for our business specifically.
And we can’t wait for what’s next.
We’re looking into the next decade with optimism. We’re staying on the cutting edge of industry technology and best practices to match the demands of our customers’ projects. We’ve updated ourselves on the Minnesota Accessibility Code and can build ADA compliant parking lots to strict specification. 2010 ADA standards are being updated now, and you can bet that Goodmanson Construction will be ready for the next set of standards.
It’s true, folks. There have been rumblings that the Department of Justice is going to roll out updates to the Americans with Disabilities Act, and you’re going to want a contractor who is watching for the changes and makes sure that your next project is compliant. You need a contractor who knows how many feet wide a van accessible space is going to need to be. If the minimum number of accessible parking spaces changes, your contractor needs to be aware of that change.
You don’t need to know the ADA standards, but your contractor does.
That’s what we like to say around here. It’s not your job to know what the shortest accessible route to your accessible entrance is. It’s not your job to know how many spaces and access aisles you need to accommodate people with disabilities.
But it will be your responsibility if one of those items on your next project is off according to the new standards.
Who you choose to build your next project with matters. While you don’t need to know the exact measurements, you need to know you’re in good hands for ADA compliance. That’s what you’ll get with us. We’re ready for what comes next.