DeStefano & Associates Inc.
John DeStefano established DeStefano & Associates (D&A) in 1999 with the goal of providing informed, innovative preconstruction and construction management services to clients in New England. John has more than 30 years of experience in the industry, drawing on his diverse background. He is a professional engineer and also has master’s degrees in construction management and business administration.
D&A performs design and construction work for a broad market, serving commercial, industrial, institutional and residential clients throughout New England. Based in Portsmouth, N.H., the company has worked throughout the state as well as in Massachusetts and southern Maine.
D&A has built a reputation in the industry for quality work. With a large presence in commercial construction, the company stands out with an integrated approach to building and fit-ups. John and his team strive to work not just for clients, but with them. The business has built strong relationships with developers and business owners.
“As construction managers, we work with our clients on a flexible basis,” he elaborates. “They appreciate that because in retail, you might not have all of the leases filled at the beginning of a project. We are able to conform to the tenants as they get leased up and bring them into the building rather than just building just vanilla boxes at a level of fit-up tenants may not need or have a use for. We perform highly customized construction work.”
A growing portfolio
The team has been busy with a wide range of projects in recent years. In the realm of retail, D&A recently completed a 128,000-square foot retail project with stores and a cinema in Epping, N.H. “We performed this project in three phases,” John recounts. “The first phase was 80,000 square feet and we needed to put that together in six months. That included the ground-up building and fit-up, including a Marshalls store and a PetSmart; then came the cinema at 29,000 square feet. We completed that in seven months, another quick time frame. The third phase was building two, which was a 28,000-square foot strip. This building houses three restaurants and several variety stores. Again, that one filled up as tenants came in. Every time they came in, we performed a custom fit-up.”
In the industrial sector, one of D&A’s signature clients is Stonewall Kitchen. “We did the design and construction for their facility in York,” John notes. “The space houses food processing, corporate offices and retail. We also helped them in the land evaluation and selection process as well as permitting and some of the creative funding mechanisms.”
The company has also been involved in a number of restaurant construction and renovation projects as well as historic restorative renovations, multifamily construction and custom homebuilding projects. “We currently have a five-story multi-family residential building under construction in Dover, N.H.,” John says. “The building is right on the Cocheco River. We have customized the architecture and interiors, with everything oriented toward what the owner wants and has the budget for. This will be a 12-month project.”
D&A has been quite busy over the last few years. As the economy makes a steady recovery, John and his team are building a strong backlog. The calendar includes a wide range of industrial, commercial and residential work throughout New England. “We continue to grow by building relationships through word-of-mouth and satisfied customers,” he explains.
“We have been in business now for 15 years,” John continues. “Each year has been better than the last. I am interested in doing a good job for clients, as opposed to trying to achieve a certain dollar volume. We are more interested in broadening the type of client we serve as well as the type of project and location of projects. We have some work now in Pennsylvania. While we did not start out there, we have a client here in New England who appreciates the work we do and the value he gets and asked us to follow him. That’s our plan, to follow good clients who will lead us to future work.”
As the business grows, John takes a great sense of pride in his team’s accomplishments and capabilities. “I enjoy the whole idea of what I call taking an idea from the drawing a client made on a napkin and turning it into reality,” he elaborates. “That’s what I love doing and what the company loves doing.”
D&A excels on challenging projects, whether constrained by cost, site conditions, schedule or types of tenants. John and his team embrace a healthy competitive spirit. The main goal is to continue innovating, taking on new challenges over the years. With a strong foundation and innovative team, DeStefano & Associates Inc. will continue to make strides, expanding the company’s market and reaching out to new clients.
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