Maxwell Construction Co.

Maxwell Construction Co. is meeting the challenges of the national economy by expanding its reach in more ways than one. Since its establishment more than 20 years ago, the company has been a big part of the commercial and residential development of southeast Indiana. While the company remains dedicated to its loyal customers within its geographic region, it is also seeking different types of jobs outside its home base.

“We’re very competitive locally and we wanted to stay here and do the best job we could for our local community,” Vice President Randy Maxwell says. “We did that, but with the economic slowdown, we’ve looked for other opportunities. But we’re confident our local economy will continue to grow.” 

Private to Public 

Randy Maxwell’s father John founded the company in 1988 after several years of experience working for construction companies in the Cincinnati area before breaking out on his own. The company’s first project broke ground in May of that year. Since then, Maxwell has completed more than 2 million square feet of construction. The company remains family owned. Historically, Maxwell’s business was 80 percent private contracts and 20 percent public projects. “[But] with the economic downturn, that’s flip-flopped,” Maxwell says. “About 80 percent of our work now is municipal, hard-bid projects.”

One major public project the company is now working on is a renovation of the Boone County Public Library Scheben Branch in Union, Ky. Maxwell crews are working to convert unused administrative space into public areas, including a café area, a teen space, and expanded collections, according to the library.

The renovation – expected to be finished this summer – is an example of the company’s widening reach in light of slower private development in its home base, Maxwell says.

“We’ve really expanded our geographic presence,” he adds.  ”We used to not have to travel farther than 45 minutes away to do projects, now we’re going further into northern Kentucky and into Cincinnati.” 

Expanded Services

While Maxwell usually serves in more of a general contractor capacity on public projects, it recently took on two construction management contracts. The company will oversee the building of a public sports complex, as well as a child advocacy center. Both projects are in their core geographic market.

“We hadn’t done [construction management] before,” Maxwell says. “We’re expanding our arsenal, and really having to grow business through offering different services as opposed to just being in a general contracting mode.” For its private sector customers, Maxwell Construction Co. offers design/build services, typically on negotiated contracts. The company has three engineers and several design professionals on staff.

Work on the Private Sector

The company’s private construction jobs include medical facilities, banking facilities, retail centers, multifamily apartments, senior housing facilities, nursing homes, historic renovations and industrial facilities.

Maxwell expects to soon break ground on an expansion to the Ripley Crossing nursing home complex in Milan, Ind.

The company works heavily with repeat customers. “We’re positioned in our market to be extremely competitive; we feel like we have a strong enough presence that [local companies ] know us and would talk to us, or we’d seek them out,” Maxwell says. “We offer a lot of value for this local market.”

In recent years, the company worked on several construction projects at the new Honda plant in Greensburg, Ind. The company delivered:

  • A 13,000-square-foot distribution center;
  • Three new guard houses; 
  • Support buildings for the plant’s railroad system; 
  • Branding the building with the original signage installation; and
  • A recent restroom remodeling project inside the plant was also completed late last year. 
Developing New Business

The company recently hired Mark Scheper as its head of business development, a new position specifically created to extend the company’s reach and customer base. Scheper has more than 20 years experience in business development with Cincinnati-based developers, Maxwell says. 

“He’s helped expand our network,” Maxwell adds. “Something I’m learning every day is that business development is about building relationships cultivated by networking.”

Maxwell says the position was high priority for the company even before the recession. “We were heading down the road of [creating the position] before the downturn,” he adds. “We knew that in order to grow this business, we needed a business development person.”

More than Construction

Maxwell’s operations are not limited to the construction sector. It goes beyond construction services to include commercial and residential property management and development. The breakdown is: 

  • Randy Maxwell – Leads Maxwell Development, the company’s development arm; and
  • Jeff Lyness – Heads up the company’s construction and design/build services.

Maxwell Development owns the 10-screen Greendale Cinema in Greendale, as well as apartment buildings and a restaurant, LaRosa’s Pizzeria. The company is also working on securing financing to develop and build an 80-room Hampton Inn on a land it owns in Greendale.

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