Construction industry adapts to keep significant projects on track during Covid-19 shutdown

California state leaders have deemed construction as an essential business during the COVID-19 pandemic as developers continue work on critical infrastructure. The industry has quickly adopted new health and safety policies amid the pandemic, to keep thousands employed and ensure critical projects move forward. The Greater Sacramento Economic Council (GSEC) supports the industry’s import role in the economic recovery of the region as it is tied to a wide range of other industries.

Current public works and infrastructure projects including highways, rail lines, renewable energy, fiber optic cables, water pipelines, and cell towers are imperative for the safety of communities. As the need for healthcare increases, and cities grow in population, the building of hospitals, pharmacies, long term care facilities, and other commercial developments, are fundamental to society. Housing is included as essential due to the nation’s existing shortage and the need to combat homelessness.

The construction industry accounts for:

3.8% of California’s GDP (2020)
$62.3 billion in California wages and salaries (2018).
97% of construction companies in Greater Sacramento are small businesses
Construction jobs make up 7.4% of Greater Sacramento’s workforce, while the national average is 5.7%

Some of the leading planned construction projects in the Greater Sacramento region include:

The upper Westside master plan in Sacramento: $4 billion
Riverpark Subdivision in West Sacramento: $1 billion
Kings Sleep Train Arena in Sacramento: $1 billion
Kaiser Permanente Hospital in Sacramento (The Railyards): $750 million
DGS State Project Infrastructure Fund Projects: $3.5 billion
JCC Sacramento Courthouse: $499 million

The impact of a construction project is significant. The Kaiser Permanente Hospital, for example, will support more than 4,800 jobs and generate $1.2 billion in economic impact.

As construction industry leaders in Sacramento; Kitchell, Teichert Construction, and MarketOne Builders continue work on essential construction projects in the region. There is an increased focus on health and safety precautions on job sites due to COVID-19, including wearing face masks, using sanitizer, and social distancing. These companies are complying with all CDC, state, and local health guidelines to ensure the safety of their workforce.

Kitchell is actively working on several marquee projects in downtown Sacramento including the DGS Clifford L. Allenby Project on O Street, the Community Center Theater renovation, and the Sacramento Commons housing project.

“Our work continues to push forward across the state,” said Kitchell Vice President of Operations Wendy Cohen. “We are thankful that we can continue our services while at the same time providing a safe work environment on projects that are critical to the future of the Greater Sacramento region.”

Teichert Construction currently has 200 projects underway in California, keeping nearly 2,000 people employed. Some of those projects in Greater Sacramento include the Zinfandel Overpass at Highway 50, truck scales on Interstate 80 and Baseline Road widening.

“A wide variety of new work and hygiene practices have quickly become a new normal. The result is that we have experienced no cases of COVID-19 in our hourly field workforce to date. We have the utmost respect and appreciation for the professionalism and adaptability of our workforce,” said Jud Riggs, Chairman, CEO and President of Teichert, Inc.

MarketOne Builders continues work on the $17 million Fort Sutter Hotel in Sacramento and $6.9 million construction of industrial space for Gemini Bioproducts in West Sacramento.

“By keeping projects moving and the economy working it will be of tremendous benefit to the Greater Sacramento region once we get back to normal. Safety has always been central to our business, so adopting these practices to protect our community were implemented without hesitation,” said Wendy Nelson, MarketOne Builders Director of Strategic Partnerships.

Government leaders in the Greater Sacramento region are supporting the construction industry and adopting new methods to approve projects to keep business moving. Many city councils are able to keep the approval process in the public eye, by holding virtual meetings and inspections. Contracts, plans, and renderings can all be submitted and reviewed online.

“The construction industry will help lead us in economic recovery. They lay the groundwork for prosperity as they are tied to so many industries,” said Barry Broome, GSEC President & CEO.

About the Greater Sacramento Economic Council

The Greater Sacramento Economic Council is the catalyst for innovative growth strategies in the Capital Region of California. The organization spearheads community-led direction to retain, attract, grow and scale tradable sectors, develop advanced industries and create jobs and investment throughout a six-county region. Greater Sacramento represents a collaboration between local and state governments, market leaders, influencers and stakeholders, with the sole mission of driving inclusive economic growth. The Greater Sacramento region was founded on discovery, built on leadership and fueled by innovation.