Azalea Apartments Rendering - NEWS

West Palm Beach-based Verdex Construction announces the start of construction on Azalea, a multifamily rental community at 8240 Causeway Boulevard in Tampa. The project consists of 289-apartments and four single-story garages for client Zom Living. The project was designed by architect LRK. Completion is expected in the fall of 2023.

Azalea will feature 1-, 2- and 3-bedroom units across seven three- and four-story buildings with a total square footage of 279,732 on a 13.3-acre site. Amenities include a 2,500 sq. ft. clubhouse with meeting rooms and a work from home lounge, dog park, pool, pavilion, and grill deck. The project includes improvements to surrounding streets that will add sidewalks and turn lanes.

“This is one of three recent project starts for us in the Tampa/St. Petersburg/Sarasota market that follow our completion of the WestShore Apartments, solidifying our expansion into the area,” said Verdex Construction President Rex Kirby. “We’ve also moved to a larger office to support our increased efforts and to address construction needs across the Tampa Bay region.”

Verdex Construction’s recent projects include Westshore Apartments in Tampa, The Royal Palm Beach Town Hall, Canopy by Hilton West Palm Beach Downtown1000 North, an upscale restaurant/club on the Loxahatchee River in Jupiter; and Town Lantana Apartments in Lantana.

Since its launch just over six years ago, Verdex Construction has earned numerous awards and prestigious industry recognition, including being selected as a finalist for 2020 Business of the Year by the South Florida Business Journal, finalist for 2020 Business of the Year by the Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches, and being selected as a GrowFL “Company to Watch”.

Tiffanie Artigas, Procore Groundbreaker of the Year - News

West Palm Beach-based Verdex Construction announces that its construction technology manager, Tiffanie Artigas, has won the national 2021 Groundbreaker of the Year award by Procore Technologies. Procore’s prestigious Groundbreaker Awards celebrate the individuals, projects, and companies that impact and drive progress using its construction technology. Through Procore, a leading provider of construction management software, Tiffanie has helped Verdex work more efficiently, communicate better and build faster.

Verdex had been using Procore Technologies software to manage projects since the company was launched, and as the company grew dramatically over the past six years, training an ever-growing workforce on the system became a constant challenge. Artigas was initially training staffers while on-the-job in her role as assistant project manager. She became so adept that Verdex promoted her to manager of construction technology, a new position where she could focus on training staff and maximizing the many features of Procore that would streamline operations and communicate project updates to clients. In her new role, Artigas created a formal Training Center, organized two-day company-wide trainings and established a very successful training program for construction Small Business Enterprises (SBEs) for the Office of Diversity at Palm Beach County Schools. After launch of the Training Center, Verdex realized a 45-percent increase in Procore usage among its team.

“Our internal and external training program and expanded use of Procore and have paid numerous dividends in how everyone manages our projects and communicates,” said Verdex Construction President Rex Kirby. “Tiffanie’s leadership in training our staff, owners, subcontractors and SBEs has made Verdex more efficient and productive from top to bottom. She is truly deserving of this national recognition.”

In just over five years, Verdex has earned numerous awards and prestigious industry recognition, including being selected as a finalist for 2021 Business of the Year by the South Florida Business Journal, finalist for 2021 Business of the Year by the Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches, and being selected as a GrowFL “Company to Watch”.

About Verdex Construction

Verdex Construction is a privately held building contractor based in West Palm Beach, FL, led by founder and President Rex Kirby, a 35-year veteran in the construction business.  Verdex provides general contracting services to clients including preconstruction, construction management, and design-build.  Verdex is committed to “Building Something Better” through exceptional service, a fundamental focus on safety and quality, and value to owners, customers and the community.  For more information, visit www.verdex.com

Rex Kirby, CEO and President

In this interview with Invest: Palm Beach, Verdex President Rex Kirby discusses the company’s approach to the pandemic and how the commercial sector is shaping up.

What successful strategies did your company implement to manage the pandemic?

As an essential business, we were able to keep working. We put in a great deal of effort to make sure we were doing business the right way so we could stay open and operational. We learned how to distance people and keep them safe on job sites. Coming out of this pandemic, we’ve seen that there is plenty of money out there and people are looking to invest in real estate, both on the capital and the equity sides with banks offering low-interest loans. The challenge is getting supplies and materials in all areas. The price of wood skyrocketed, rising from an index of about $350 per thousand feet to close to $1,700. Also, all metals have been high and drywall costs 50% more per unit than it did a year ago just because of the cost of metal studs. We have some industrial work and we can’t even get bar joists in less than 10 months. There is only so much people will spend on rents so the project has to be financially feasible for developers. We’ve had to work around getting material and figure out ways to work with the client and do our best to reduce pricing so that projects can move forward.

What changes in demand have you perceived over the past year and a half?

The apartment sector is on fire with all the people moving into Florida right now. We can’t build apartments quick enough. We are also gaining traction on the public sector side.They had some challenges because their tax rolls were down but there is maintenance and buildings that need to be built, so they are still releasing projects. Industrial is strong, although one of the challenges is that Amazon is building so much throughout Florida that they have a lock on a lot of the material and they are willing to pay a premium for it so you have to get in line and wait. We’re thinking outside of the box, such as delaying the vertical parts of the job and starting the site piece so that we can get ahead and get the pipe out there. There is a PVC shortage as well, which is essential for all water and sewer installations. We’re trying to figure out ways to lock in our pricing of materials and balance how long it will be out there before we can actually get it in the ground or building. We’re storing material at times so that we can have it available.

What does the future of commercial real estate look like?

I’ve started to see more retail come back. We have a special projects group that does a lot of interior build outs, renovation and additions. We’re doing a lot of work for the landlord Related Group at Rosemary Square. Related is almost switching out its entire tenant base with all new restaurants and shops, so they are refreshing the whole complex to update it to today’s conditions.

The office market in West Palm Beach and all the way through Miami has been on fire, post pandemic. Primarily from hedge funds and financial groups that decided they could leave New York, so the floodgates opened. There are at least three more buildings planned to go up as office space. This is after people thought nobody would come back to work, but there is a lot of demand in this area.

What is the role of technology in your daily operations?

From a project management perspective, we’re dependent on everything being transmitted online. We use Procore but there are similar systems. As we have grown and are starting to get into bigger projects, we’re starting to use more BIM modeling for laying out our mechanical, electrical, plumbing and fire protection up through corridors and buildings so that everyone knows where their spot is from an elevation standpoint. Our use of Procore has expanded over the last year and we’re training our people on how to use more of it. The ability to synchronize our forecasting with our accounting system has also improved between Procore and Sage for our accounting. It’s all about efficiency and having one program that people can get familiar with so that they are not bogged down by the computer but instead can manage and build their work.

On the other hand, everyone is looking at prefabrication. The labor force is getting increasingly strained. Therefore, we’re looking for ways to preassemble components in a shop so there is less to build in the field. Assembling off-site in a factory setting cuts down on the labor needed on the job site.

What is your outlook for your company and the construction sector in Palm Beach County?

We will grow a little more this year. Next year, we will have stronger growth. We’re picking up steam in other Florida markets as well as getting our share of work on the Southeast coast. We’re in our seventh year, we’re gaining traction with our clients with a lot of repeat work and expanding to other Florida markets. We’re building more in Tampa, targeting work in Orlando and we picked up a project for the University of Florida in Gainesville. Our future looks bright and, fortunately, we are having conversations on how big we really want to be because that sometimes changes the dynamics of a company. The main thing is to continue focusing on making sure we maintain a good brand in the industry and that we are doing a good job for our clients.

 

South Martin Industrial Park Warehouses - News

Verdex Construction has started work on South Martin Industrial Park, a new warehouse facility at the intersection of SW Kanner Hwy. and Florida’s Turnpike in Martin County, FL.

The project includes nine warehouse buildings totaling 96,207 sq. ft. The site will also include a free-standing consumer self-storage facility. The developer is NNA Kansas West, and the project was designed by Jupiter-based Morel De Guiramond Architecture with planning by Cotleur and Hearing.

“Despite the current challenges of acquiring construction materials, we went to extreme lengths to lock in pricing and inventory to assure the client would meet their budget,” said Verdex President Rex Kirby. “In this environment, it’s imperative to go the extra mile for our clients. This is what we mean when we say we’re ‘Building Something Better’ at Verdex.”

The nine warehouses consist of three tilt-wall and six concrete block buildings with 40 total bays on an 11-acre site. Construction started on June 1 and estimated completion is April 2022.

Verdex Construction’s recent projects throughout South Florida include the Canopy by Hilton West Palm Beach Downtown1000 North, an upscale restaurant/club on the Loxahatchee River in Jupiter; and Town Lantana Apartments in Lantana.

In just over five years, Verdex has earned numerous awards and prestigious industry recognition, including being selected as a finalist for 2020 Business of the Year by the South Florida Business Journal, finalist for 2020 Business of the Year by the Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches, and being selected as a GrowFL “Company to Watch”.

About Verdex Construction

Verdex Construction is a privately held building contractor based in West Palm Beach, FL, led by founder and President Rex Kirby, a 35-year veteran in the construction business.  Verdex provides general contracting services to clients including preconstruction, construction management, and design-build.  Verdex is committed to “Building Something Better” through exceptional service, a fundamental focus on safety and quality, and value to owners, customers and the community.  For more information, visit www.verdex.com

City of Pompano Beach Senior Activity Center Rendering

Verdex Construction has broken ground on the Pompano Beach Senior Activity Center located at 2005 NW 9th St., Pompano Beach. This project for the City of Pompano Beach consists of a one-story, 8,500 sq. ft. facility with indoor and outdoor amenities. The architect is Bermello Ajamil & Partners of Miami. Verdex hired more than 40-percent of its subcontractors and vendors from Pompano Beach, fulfilling a promise to the City that a significant portion of the work would be executed by local firms.

The interior will include multiple activity rooms, a fitness center, a spacious lobby and lounge area, a prep kitchen for catered events and office space with special anti-microbial HVAC coatings for top air quality and cleanliness. There will also be an outdoor activity area. Construction is expected to be complete in approximately 10 months.

“This community has asked for a senior activity center for many years so we look forward to providing them with a modern, long-lasting gathering space to enjoy,” said Verdex Construction president Rex Kirby. “We are also proud to have achieved a 40-plus-percent local subcontractor participation for this project which ensures a good portion of the work remains with Pompano Beach based businesses.”

Verdex Construction’s recent projects throughout South Florida include the Canopy by Hilton West Palm Beach Downtown; 1000 North, an upscale restaurant/club on the Loxahatchee River in Jupiter; and Town Lantana Apartments in Lantana. Verdex also has projects underway in both Tampa and Gainesville.

In just over six years, Verdex has earned numerous awards and prestigious industry recognition, including being selected as a finalist for 2020 Business of the Year by the South Florida Business Journal, finalist for 2020 Business of the Year by the Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches, Builder of the Year by the AIA Palm Beach, and being selected as a GrowFL “Company to Watch”.

About Verdex Construction

Verdex Construction is a privately held building contractor based in West Palm Beach, FL, led by founder and President Rex Kirby, a 35-year veteran in the construction business.  Verdex provides general contracting services to clients including preconstruction, construction management, and design-build.  Verdex is committed to “Building Something Better” through exceptional service, a fundamental focus on safety and quality, and value to owners, customers and the community.  For more information, visit www.verdex.com

Verdex Construction Donates $125,808 to HomeSafe

Palm Beach County non-profit, HomeSafe celebrated the ribbon-cutting for the opening of its brand-new campus in West Palm Beach. The innovative Sylvester Family West Campus will provide a welcoming and safe environment for young victims of child abuse to heal from their trauma and find confidence in their future.

The ribbon-cutting event also included a special announcement from Verdex Construction, the general contractor for the project. Verdex President Rex Kirby announced the company is donating $125,000 to HomeSafe to support its mission.

“As a past president and current member of the HomeSafe Board of Directors, I wanted to do everything we could to let the agency direct its budget to helping these children and not on construction costs,” said Kirby.

“This is truly a transformative time for the agency,” said Matthew Ladika, CEO of HomeSafe. “We are one of only five agencies in the state of Florida that provides a unique level of care in specialized therapeutic group homes for severely traumatized child abuse victims. This new campus, along with future construction projects, will help us continue our mission of creating safer, more productive lives for infants, children, young adults and families.”

The Sylvester Family West Campus consists of two buildings, the Residential Cottage and the Enrichment Center, totaling 15,356 sq. ft. The Residential Cottage offers 12 suites where each child will have their own private room and bathroom. The Cottage also has a large kitchen, living and dining areas, therapy wing and gaming area to create a comfortable home environment. The new Enrichment Center offers music and workout rooms, a multimedia lab, and educational wing and has a strategically designed layout so that staff will have even better supervision of the children. The 3.2 acre site also includes a nature trail, basketball court and gazebo which will provide for many outdoor activities.

About Verdex Construction

Verdex Construction is a privately held building contractor based in West Palm Beach, FL, led by founder and President Rex Kirby, a 35-year veteran in the construction business.  Verdex provides general contracting services to clients including preconstruction, construction management, and design-build.  Verdex is committed to “Building Something Better” through exceptional service, a fundamental focus on safety and quality, and value to owners, customers and the community.  For more information, visit www.verdex.com