For the University of Michigan – Dearborn (UMD), transforming a challenge into a success took some creativity. The state school has suffered decreased enrollment because of its lack of student housing, whether on or off-campus. Budget cuts in recent years made it impossible for the school to even consider it when academic needs hung in the balance. Even still, UMD knew that if it remained a commuter school, it would continue to negatively affect its freshman enrollment. As the school worked to solve its problem, the answer came in the form of a partnership. 

At a time when many home construction businesses were floundering, Pratt Home Builders found new life by tightening its belt and reassessing its focus. “We have a long history of building quality homes in the Chattanooga area,” president Win Pratt declares. “Even though our quality measures haven’t changed, our company is making more calculated and strategic decisions.”

Pratt Home Builders was founded in 1998 by Win and his father, James Pratt. The self-taught builders started out building traditional and craftsman-style homes. However, market downturns the company experienced during 2007 caused the firm to reassess its business strategies.

Under development in Barstow, Calif., Gadson Garden Estates will be a 463-unit senior housing and assisted-living community that will feature 166 townhomes (called Eldominiums) alongside assisted-living facility units. Gadson Garden Estates will be a unique senior living project and will designate Barstow as a haven for retirees and seniors from across the country.

“My background is in hospital and nursing home administration, and I have been interested in developing health delivery systems and unique operating concepts for many years,” explains Robert Merritt, developer and designer. 

Los Angeles has always been a place for those who dream big. From the ambitious plans that turned a small ranch town into a modern metropolis to the entertainment industry that calls it home, L.A. has a long history of playing host to those who set their sights high. That’s what makes Dave Tuggey Construction such a good fit for the L.A. construction marketplace, because the company has earned a reputation as one of the most ambitious and capable builders in the area. 

The first major phase of a project located in the heart of one of Colorado’s most desirable towns is now complete. Residents of the North Main Apartments at Steel Ranch development in Louisville, Colo., are beginning to settle into the first three of the project’s seven planned buildings. General contractor Confluence Builders of Golden, Colo., turned over the buildings and a clubhouse in August 2013, with the remaining four buildings slated for completion later this year.

A developer with more than 30 years of experience in buying, building and rehabilitating residential projects is leading the long-awaited redevelopment of a former warehouse in Sacramento, Calif.

CFY Development Inc. broke ground in February 2013 on the $42 million Warehouse Artist Lofts project, which includes the renovation of a 105-year-old former industrial building in Sacramento’s historic R Street district into a mixed-use residential and commercial building. Construction is anticipated to conclude in December 2014.

Idaho-based Best Bath Systems Inc. had been successful as a manufacturer of composite showers for the competitive residential market since its inception in 1971, but President Jeff Mooney explains that there were times when the company had to supplement its work with products for other sectors. For example, he says, the company spent some time building shipping containers for Navy Sidewinder missiles. However, things changed in a big way for Best Bath in 1992, when the Americans With Disabilities Act created an explosion in accessibility products. With the company’s expertise in traditional shower products, Best Bath was well suited to take advantage of the boom, and that’s what it has done ever since. 

For three decades, Split Rail Fence & Supply Co. focused most of its resources on the residential development sector. Founder Tom Barenberg built relationships with Colorado homebuilders and became a go-to contractor for fencing installation and supply services. Although those relationships remain intact, the company itself has had to diversify into new markets following the downturn in residential development.

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