Southland Industries of Garden Grove, Calif., has evolved since the late 1940s into one of this country's largest, most innovative mechanical contractors, and a big part of its strategy is making sure new ideas and processes are based on common sense. The company helped pioneer design-build delivery and was an early champion of sustainable strategies such as lean construction and integrated project delivery. It has also pushed the boundaries of building information modeling. "We've always been a little bit different from the typical contractor," says Southland CEO Ted Lynch, who holds a Ph.D. in architectural engineering from Penn State.
"Southland is known as an innovative company across the board in engineering and construction techniques," says Mike McLaughlin, Southland's vice president of preconstruction and a leader of the company's next-generation BIM strategy development. "But it's innovation with practical applications. It's easy to dream big dreams, to come up with new systems or solutions, but the practical aspect and concern for cost are key factors as well."