ELO Contracting in the News
YONKERS – Minimalist living is coming to downtown in the form of micro-apartments that offer big style in lieu of square footage.
Check out the full news story by Ernie Garcia of The Journal News here!
Check out our news story by Chris Petersen of Construction Today here!
When John Oehler started ELO Contracting & Consulting 20 years ago, the vast majority of contractors building multifamily residential in New York City were focused solely on the construction side of things, leaving many developers to handle the architectural and design side of the process themselves. Today, that’s still the case, and it has allowed ELO to create a strong niche for itself through its design/build focus.
Serving the New York City metropolitan area, ELO concentrates on building multifamily residential projects throughout the area. Oehler says the company primarily serves owner/developers, and over the last 20 years it has built a strong reputation with many of the top developers in the city for completing high-quality work while making the construction process as painless as possible for the developer.
Oehler says ELO has always been a step or two ahead of the rest of the construction market in New York City, and the company’s most recent work bears that out. As ELO continues to concentrate on doing what it does best and taking the worry out of the developer experience, Oehler says the company remains one of the most innovative design/build firms in the New York City metro market.
Oehler says the fact that ELO offers design/build construction services is a key differentiator for the company. He says few contractors in the New York City metropolitan market offer design/build services, and ELO’s ability to combine design, architecture and construction under one roof provides greater value to its customers.
“I don’t know if there are any design/build firms like this,” Oehler says. “I tend to simplify things into one stop. It really saves on the costs and it’s really value driven because you save on the speed and the construction costs.”
According to Oehler, the company’s ability to provide design/build services means ELO can take a lot of the cost out of the equation for its customers by being involved in the entire construction process from initial designs to the actual construction. “We try to do everything in-house, so we have a definite grasp on the costs,” he says. “We know what’s coming down the road, so change-orders are minimal, if any.”
The company’s design/build expertise not only removes a lot of the cost from the equation for its clients, but Oehler says it takes away a lot of the worry, as well. With the experience ELO brings to each project, he adds, clients can feel secure knowing that their projects will be handled by an experienced contractor from start to finish.
Along with being one of the only multifamily residential contractors in New York City to embrace the design/build model, Oehler says ELO also is one of the most forward-thinking contractors in the marketplace. Whether it is features like rooftop pools or sustainable construction elements, Oehler says most of ELO’s projects feature something that sets them apart from the work done by its competitors, and that additional effort pays off.
“We try everything, we always try to be innovative,” Oehler says. “If it’s green, we put it in. On the back end it adds a lot of value because people want to live there.”
A prime example of this philosophy in action is the company’s current project in Yonkers, N.Y., where it is converting a 100-year-old factory building into a micro-unit apartment complex that will feature 100 studio apartment units between 300 and 650 square feet. Oehler says the project is unique because of its revolutionary rental price structure, which allows residents to pay a flat monthly rent that includes all utilities – including high-speed wi-fi – except landline phone service. Oehler says the pay-one-price rent structure will attract young professionals who are saving their money to buy their first homes.
ELO is adding four floors onto the top of the building, as well as adding new elevator shafts and rooftop gardens. Oehler says the company expects the project to be very popular once it opens. “I think we’re going to hit it out of the park with this,” he says.
Smart buildings like the one ELO is building in Yonkers and green technology are trends Oehler says ELO expects to continue impacting the construction industry. He says more of its projects are integrating solar panels with battery backup as a way to reduce energy costs to residents, and overall people want their homes to be smaller and more efficient. “I think the McMansion thing is over,” he says.
Over the next few years, Oehler says ELO’s goal will be to manage its growth while expanding its business model to include a larger portion of the New York City market. He says the company already has enough work backlogged to last it the next two years, but it doesn’t necessarily want to grow much bigger. “Right now, I think we want to stick at a certain level and push the envelope on building and design,” Oehler says. “Sometimes it’s not always good to get big.”