APG was excited to get started on this project and quickly assembled a talented team. Led by Project Superintendent Chris Gobright and Project Manager Brian Stine, our field technicians have been going above and beyond to keep this complex job on track and in budget. We are especially proud of how they reacted to and overcame a recent challenge. For reasons beyond our control, we were left with only 30 days to meet the scheduled permanent power date, which was a daunting task considering the amount of work left to be done. For many contractors, that deadline simply wouldn’t have been met. But thanks to our constantly growing workforce, APG had the manpower to make it happen. Several of our project superintendents and their crews rallied together, working 10 hour days and weekends to meet this extremely aggressive schedule. Brian Stine reported that an astounding 4,700 hours of overtime were worked in this 30-day period alone. True to our reputation, APG did everything it took to meet the deadline! This is all the more impressive considering that we’ve installed nearly 53 miles of conduit, 198 miles of wire, and three paralleled 1,500kW emergency generators. Our Technology Group will be installing seventeen fully integrated audio visual conference rooms, six video walls that have the ability to display all traffic cameras in St. Petersburg and 122 TV monitors with IPTV capability throughout the facility.
Ensuring that more than $70 million of active projects are equipped with the right tools, materials, and storage trailers, while also maintaining our 50,000 square foot headquarters, is no easy feat. Luckily for us, we have Warehouse Manager Bruce Lyle and his team of Ralph Cordasco, Mick Mitchell, and John Kadlec to keep our ship sailing smoothly.
With over $3 million worth of tools in our inventory, including power tools, ladders, material carts, safety gear, and more, the warehouse team is kept busy moving these between projects, and doing maintenance and inspections when these tools return to the shop. Currently, we are replacing hundreds of our older power tools with new, standardized Milwaukee brand tools. The team has also been preparing a new mobile prefabrication shop, which will be stationed on large projects to help speed up production. This trailer will house a smart bender, table bender, band saw, heat boxes, a threader, and a shearing machine.
Around our property, the warehouse team completes important maintenance tasks throughout the day to keep everything in order. They empty the trash, ensure the restrooms have paper products and soap, change lightbulbs and ballasts, move furniture, setup and breakdown for special events, deliver packages, and oversee renovation and other maintenance contractors. Their work is often behind the scenes but it doesn’t go unnoticed.
A big thank you to the Warehouse team for your daily hard work and dedication!
We welcomed customers, vendors and partners to our Open House, held on Thursday, July 12, to showcase our new office renovation. Guests toured our engineering offices, café, hub room, huddle room, and fleet area to see our recent upgrades. Each group contributed to the hospitality provided in their own unique way. A major hit was the Technology Group’s walk-the-plank, a 3D virtual reality experience of walking between two high-rise buildings. The Service and Life Safety Group had a luau in their area, complete with frozen margaritas. The IT Group celebrated Tampa Bay craft breweries with a selection of local beers. Our Fleet Group shared a dunk tank and everyone enjoyed trying to send Sam Barber plummeting into the water. Human Resources wowed with a functioning Tesla coil.
Delicious catering for this event was provided by Bascom’s Chop House. We’d like to thank Chef Paul Bullard and his staff for the fantastic appetizers—spring rolls, meatballs, bacon-wrapped scallops and more. The spectacular three-tiered, lighted ice sculpture garnished with shrimp and seaweed was the centerpiece of the café. Guests went home with a premium box of chocolates from Norman Love Confections.
Our guests shared the following comments about the Open House:
Thank you to everyone who attended and to those who made this evening possible, including Steve Tallyn, Rachel Kotsch, Charmin Henley, Kim Barber, Carol Quiroz, and Jessica Griffith. This was another event to remember!
With construction booming across the state and cranes lining the skyline of Tampa Bay, APG is breaking all-time records for jobs under contract and we’re privileged to be a part of some truly exciting projects. Many of them have unusually tight deadlines, and our field teams have been putting in long hours all summer to finish them the APG way: on schedule.
It’s no secret that staffing projects and growing a skilled workforce has become an industry-wide challenge. Even so, we’ve been amazed by the number of new team members choosing to begin their electrical careers here at APG. We’ve hired more than 80 people this year alone! These men and women are quickly building their skills under the mentorship of our more experienced electricians while working on some fast-paced and demanding jobs. Many of them also attend apprenticeship classes at night, making their dedication all the more impressive.
Meeting tight deadlines on complicated, large-scale projects takes an above and beyond effort from our crews in the field, and APG has several of them under construction at the same time. One in particular is the continued renovation of Raymond James Stadium. Now in its third phase, all work has to be done during this year’s offseason so that the stadium is totally finished and ready to welcome fans by Opening Day. To meet that deadline, our field techs have been putting in very long days with many of them working 70-80 hours per week. Every weekend, over 80 of our techs routinely put their lives on hold to carry this project into the end zone. On the other side of the bay, our crews at the St. Petersburg Police Headquarters have been putting in unusually long hours, even gathering a crew of 40 techs on the weekends. Going south to Venice, our team really stepped up by working on a project on the fourth of July to support the glass manufacturing plant at PGT Industries.
All this extra effort isn’t just coming from our Construction Group; our Service and Technology Groups have been working around the clock too. Service has been extremely busy with major shutdowns at Catalent, Linvatec, and Sheraton Sand Key, while Technology is doing an unprecedented amount of work at USAA Crosstown. In just two months, our Technology crew has installed nearly 1 million feet (over 180 miles!) of cabling as they build out twelve telecom rooms and provide complete audio/visual integration of nearly one hundred other rooms at USAA alone. To accomplish this incredible feat, a crew of twelve has been working nights and weekends, putting in up to 80 hours per week.
These are just a few of our ongoing projects that require significant overtime. The Ringling College Student Housing building had a mandatory 6-day workweek with an accelerated schedule, and crews at the Atlanta Braves Stadium and many others have been working well over 40 hours per week to stay on track.
The more than 300 men and women at the front lines of our projects in the field are the lifeblood of APG. They put their skills to the test every single day as they carefully lay out miles of underground conduit, install perfectly parallel feeders, hang thousands of light fixtures, teach our apprentices how to solve problems, coordinate shutdowns in healthcare facilities, and do so much more. Their attention to detail and pride in their work is widely recognized by our customers who highly praise their professional installations. Many times, it’s what our customers see as they walk through a completed job that makes them want to hire us again and again.
To everyone in the field who has made sacrifices to go above and beyond this summer: THANK YOU. Your hard work, your long hours, and the way you overcome challenges will not go unnoticed. You and your families are what make APG special, and YOU are the key to our success!
We held our 15th Annual Family Fishing Tournament on Saturday, June 23 at the Belleair Boat Ramp. This year should have marked our 16th tournament, but last year’s event had to be postponed due to the active hurricane season we experienced. We had a record turnout of 154 anglers, including 31 kids who were twelve years of age or under. Each of the kids received a fishing rod and reel combo, including a fishing net, for participating, and seeing the smiles on their faces was priceless. All of our anglers enjoyed a great day outdoors catching their favorite fish, and many got that all-important photo of the big one that didn’t get away.
The tournament shirt was another winning design by Alan Woodford of Big Lagoon Designs, which all of the participants were proud to wear. The fish looked great on the shirt and even better on the hooks! Everyone enjoyed the food, drinks, and raffle prizes, and many of the adults were excited to walk away with a cash prize for their catch. Our fishing tournament has been growing since its inception and continues to be an event that employees and their families look forward to every year. All of us at APG would like to thank the following individuals for organizing this stellar event—Mike Henley, Chris Johnson, John Kavula, Jerry Lightner, Bruce Lyle, Mickey Mitchell, Rachel Kotsch, Tim White, Bruce Balcombe, Ralph Cordasco, and Steve Tallyn. We hope to see everyone again next year!
Last year, APG Technology bolstered its talent with more advanced certifications and brought home several prestigious awards for its hard work. For example, APG was approved as an Avixa APEx Certified Installer. This puts APG among the world’s leading audio/visual integrators because it is exceedingly difficult to earn. Our team was required to hit a high percentage of staff with CTS certifications, provide documentation of our internal processes, and submit positive customer surveys from clients. We were approved for certification within a week! We’re proud to say that 60% of our field staff is now CTS certified, and our Audio/Visual Group Manager Zach Fite is committed to making this 100% across the board.
APG Technology has been honored to receive many awards in the past few years, all resulting from an absolute commitment to first-class workmanship and client satisfaction. In 2014, we won the IEC National Award of Excellence in Construction, Low Voltage Construction category, for our work on the Florida Polytechnic University Innovative Science and Technology Building. In 2015, we received the IEC Award of Excellence in Construction, Low Voltage category, for St. Joseph’s Hospital South. In 2017, we earned the IEC Award of Excellence in Electrical Construction for the Raymond James Stadium Renovations and the ABC Florida Gulfcoast Chapter’s Merit Award for Polk State College Center for Public Safety. We’re very proud of these awards and their recognition of what we’ve accomplished so far, but we’re always striving to improve.
In 2017, the Technology Group landed its biggest project yet as the voice/data and audio/visual integrator for a major phase of renovations at Raymond James Stadium. This has catapulted APG Technology into the challenging and high-end world of stadium construction and everyone involved on the project absolutely nailed it. Not only were we a finalist in the 2018 InAVation Awards for the Leisure & Entertainment Facility category, but we were paid the highest compliment by the Raymond James Stadium construction team as we were again selected to be their technology partner for work going on into 2018.
Technology is always changing, and APG Technology embraces the change. We have team members for every part of the construction process: designers who can walk-the-walk and guide a client to the best solution, estimators striving to get every job scoped correctly for the client, project managers/technology gurus that keep it all on track, a purchasing agent who works with our warehouse manager, distributors, and manufacturers to get things on site, and field technicians that bring new meaning to the word “professional.” From start to finish, APG Technology offers highly qualified people who are a perfect fit in the construction puzzle. We are proud of where they’ve been and where they’re going. Our team may have started small, but just look at them now!
We are excited to announce that APG has reached another milestone in our history of performing Engineering, Electrical, Technology, Life Safety and Automation services in Florida:
Our company officially reached 409 active employees on May 7, 2018!
Company founders John Kavula and Jerry Lightner could never have guessed that APG would become such a major force in the industry, but they are incredibly proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish. Our drive to make a truly positive difference in the lives of our employees and the businesses of our customers has resulted in steady growth, and we’re in an excellent position to help our partners as Tampa Bay’s construction boom continues to heat up. Talented craftsmen are exceptionally hard to find right now, but we’ve spent years gathering together an all-star team of 140 journeymen electricians, 70 apprentices, and many dozens of helpers and technicians. There is no job too big for us to handle!
To stay ahead of our growth and ensure quality leadership at every level of the company, we are pleased to announce the appointment of seven new officers of APG:
These changes will help to streamline communication across our company and keep all of us focused on the same goal: to provide consistently exceptional service with a personal touch. As we continue to grow, every officer and manager at APG will remain committed to maintaining the family-oriented and “small company” approach that has helped us be so successful.
Thank you to all of our customers and partners for helping us reach this amazing milestone!
Last year, DPR Construction awarded APG a $6 million electrical contract for the second phase of the USAA Crosstown Center in Tampa. APG was especially honored to have been chosen for Phase 2 of this project because the award was a testament to the outstanding service and quality we delivered during Phase 1. We completed that portion of the project in 2015, on time and within budget, and the next phase of construction is already well under way.
USAA is a financial services company that specializes in helping military families and veterans. It has a very long history in Florida and this massive new facility will be an expansion to its second permanent location in Tampa Bay. With over 250,000 square feet spread across five stories, the new building will provide enough office space to employ as many as 1,000 people. As USAA announced on its website, “This growth is part of the financial service provider’s strategy to meet the evolving needs of its growing membership by attracting the best people in talent-rich regions like Tampa.” With so many permanent jobs on the way, not to mention the hundreds created during construction, this project is a major win for USAA, DPR Construction, APG, and the local community.
In addition to the new office space, the project also includes a 7-story, 383,000 square foot parking garage. APG is providing electrical, fire alarm, and BIM coordination services. We will be installing over 140,000 linear feet of conduit, which is enough to stretch from the project location all the way to APG Lakeland! Because USAA provides a critical service, a 1250 kW emergency generator is being installed to provide backup power in case of severe weather. To provide additional backup beyond the generator, APG coordinated with the design team to devise a way to feed parts of the new building from the existing building’s UPS system. This tie-in requires a lot of planning and coordination and will involve carefully scheduled shutdowns of the existing UPS. Our team will be hard at work on this project for the rest of the year and on into 2019.
All of us at APG were excited to earn this contract and we greatly appreciate having been selected for a second time as USAA’s electrical contractor of choice. We are proud of the hard work of our project manager, Anthony Ciquera, our superintendent, Josh Falini, and the entire team on site. Keep up the great work!
Tampa Bay Headquarters
Serving West Central Florida
4825 140th Avenue North
Clearwater, Florida 33762
Serving Central Florida
1804 Lakeland Hills Boulevard
Lakeland, Florida 33805
T: 863.688.0600 | 407.999.8300
F: 863.688.0633 | 407.999.8080