ACC Construction Company Inc.
For nearly 30 years, ACC Construction Company Inc. has been a household home in military construction contracting. Headquartered in Augusta, Georgia, ACC completes numerous projects for the Department of Defense (DOD) throughout the entire United States and internationally. With government contracts accounting for approximately 90 percent of the company’s business, ACC supplements its market share with commercial, private and negotiated work.
Mason H. McKnight III founded ACC in 1986 after working for his family’s business, McKnight Construction Company, which was started by his father and grandfather. After establishing his own venture, he quickly expanded ACC from Georgia into the Southeast and eventually the entire country and beyond. The company remains a family business and is owned by McKnight III and his three sons, Mason McKnight IV, Matt McKnight and Marshall McKnight.
A reputation within the industry
The fact that ACC has been awarded DOD contracts for nearly 30 years gives the company an edge on the competition. “In order to perform military work you have to have a fair amount of previous experience,” says Mason McKnight IV, vice president of ACC. “That often eliminates a lot of other companies that go to bid on a contract but don’t completely understand the scope of the work.”
A significant difference between DOD work and private or public projects is the fact that DOD jobs often require more people on the jobsite such as management and quality control personnel. Understanding this allows ACC to bid each job more accurately than a company without DOD contracting experience.
ACC’s solid reputation is based on not only quality, but safety as well. The company is committed to maintaining a safe and healthy workplace for all parties involved, as well as protecting the public against any potential hazards caused by its operations. Subcontractors and suppliers are required to adhere to ACC’s accident prevention plan while working on any ACC construction jobsite. Weekly safety meetings are conducted during construction and require that all subcontractor personnel are present. Before construction, subcontractor supervisory personnel must attend all preparatory meetings related to their scope of work to review safety issues and procedures.
With approximately 45 employees, ACC is able to have numerous projects simultaneously in progress. The company is currently involved in overseas work with a multimillion-dollar project that will include housing, a recreation center and warehouse.
A notable project that McKnight IV says was one of the most challenging jobs, yet very rewarding, was an $86 million barracks compound at Fort Bragg in North Carolina. This new construction project, the 3rd Brigade Barracks Complex, consisted of building the first two six-story barracks at Fort Bragg. The job also included the construction of four company operating facilities (COFs) and two battalion headquarters facilities “It was really interesting to see this project take shape,” says McKnight IV. “With eight buildings, it totaled more than 1 million square feet. Our timeline was 1,020 days to complete the job, which we successfully achieved.” The 3rd Brigade Barracks Complex project was comprised of 1,300 tons of steel, masonry walls, pre-engineered buildings and underground utilities.
From a general contractor standpoint, ACC self-performs a majority of the carpentry and some of the concrete and masonry work. When it comes to mechanical, electrical, plumbing and structural steel, ACC turns to its strong database of subcontractors with which it has established working relationships over the years.
Not only is ACC a family-owned business, it is also a family-oriented company. With a company culture that understands the importance of family and home life, ACC has been able to maintain strong employee retention with talented individuals. “Our employees make this company what it is,” says McKnight IV. “If they need to take a few days off to take care of something in their personal life, we have no problem with that because we know they will take care of business.”
The level of communication and teamwork that ACC upholds is one of the strongest aspects that McKnight IV prides his company on. “Everybody at ACC trusts each other to do their job,” he explains. “We’re also very accessible. If a customer needs to speak with someone in upper management of the company, we’re easy to reach.”
With a strong backlog of military contracts, ACC will remain on its current path while adding private- and public-sector jobs as well. The company has recently completed work with higher education institutions, which McKnight IV predicts will increase in the next few years as the economy continues to rebound from the recession. He also sees military contracts increasing as well. As they do, ACC Construction Company Inc. will remain a leader as a premier DOD contractor.
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