- Tell us a little bit about yourself and what it means to you to be named president of Kaufman Lynn Construction.
I have been with Kaufman Lynn Construction (KL) for almost seven years and am fortunate to have witnessed the growth that has occurred in South Florida, our industry and especially here at KL. This area is special to me as a Miami native who grew up in a Cuban-American household. After graduating from the University of Florida, I returned to Miami to work at Beauchamp Construction. I started working at KL in 2011 when Mike Kaufman hired me to develop and lead KL’s multi-family division and help direct the company’s growth into new regions outside of southeast Florida.
I’m excited to see the company that Mike started nearly 30-years ago expand from southeast Florida to the Fort Myers-Naples area and now to North Carolina and Texas with two new offices. With KL’s tremendous growth, Mike appointed me president to focus on the firm’s day-to-day operations so that he could focus on our company culture and, most importantly, our clients’ complete satisfaction. Being the first president named by Mike Kaufman in this company’s history is an honor.
- Kaufman Lynn recently relocated its headquarters to Delray Beach. What projects in the local South Florida market does Kaufman Lynn have in the pipeline?
We are enjoying the Delray Beach area. We had outgrown our old office space and decided to invest in property on the Congress Avenue Corridor to develop and build an inspiring office. With about 150 associates, we liked the proximity to Tri-Rail and I-95, and the easy commutes to Palm Beach and Fort Lauderdale International Airports, which keep our team connected to our projects in South Florida and our regional offices in other states.
We have many projects in the pipeline, including:
Aloft Hotel in Delray Beach – This project, which will be completed later this year, will bring 122 hotel rooms and 35 condominiums near Atlantic Avenue.
Tower 155 in downtown Boca Raton – A 128-unit, 12-story luxury condominium overlooking Mizner Park.
Bluesten Park in Hallandale Beach – This $28 million community recreation facility includes an indoor basketball court, outdoor community pool, tennis and basketball courts, multi-purpose sports field, exercise trails and playgrounds.
Quadro in Miami – A 12-story, mixed-use residential project featuring 198 rental apartments with views of Biscayne Bay and 28,000 square feet of retail and commercial space.
- What does the local development market look like for the rest of 2018?
We have seen South Florida development continue to rebound since the recession ten years ago. Florida offers a unique environment that is business-friendly, has no state taxes and, of course, our weather, beaches and outdoor venues are unmatched anywhere.
While there is currently concern in the building industry about the impact of tariffs on construction pricing, we continue to see new project opportunities in all of our sectors. So far, we have been able to develop a significant pipeline of work in South Florida and at our regional offices that will continue KL’s growth well in to 2020.
- What Kaufman Lynn project has been your favorite to work on?
I’ve been fortunate to work with talented KL associates, owners, consultants and subcontractors on a number of projects. It’s hard to pick just one favorite, so here are a few that stand out:
Our work on the first, top-to-bottom exterior renovation of Miami’s Freedom Tower was honored by Engineering News Record as the best “Renovation/Restoration Project” in 2012.
The four-story Broward College/FIU Miramar West Center that features high-tech classrooms, science labs, a bookstore and sandwich shop in an 89,000-square-foot building.
In Boca Raton, the 370-unit, residential rental community at 850 Broken Sound that opened last summer.
And, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention our new corporate headquarters facility on Congress Avenue in Delray Beach.
- What are you looking forward to most in your new position?
Working alongside Mike Kaufman for several years has reinforced my knowledge of this industry and the strong capabilities that KL brings to its clients and each project. KL’s leadership team is unique – we’re nimble, innovative and we pride ourselves on delivering quality service to all of our clients, regardless of the size of the project. Mike has set the standard really high for this company, and thanks to him, we are well positioned for future growth.