Case Studies

Russo Development Inc.

Cost-effective site, utility and environmental contracting in western New York

Just south of Buffalo, in Blasdell, New York, Russo Development is a family-owned, service-oriented company offering site, utility and environmental contracting. The business began in 1998. “It was a modest start,” says Joe Russo, founder and president of Russo Development. “I started it alone with a single dump truck and a backhoe. At first, I had all of my equipment parked in my father’s backyard.”

From the ground up

Business began to take off for Russo Development in 2004. “I purchased another company and eventually moved to a new site and I began to attract the expertise of many talented construction professionals,” recounts Joe.

In 2005, Russo Development added environmental services, such as groundwater testing, removal of contaminated soils, treatment and disposal, to its lineup. “As with our other services, we’re committed to our tradition of providing customers with cost-effective, professional results,” assures Joe. “It’s this philosophy that has allowed us to attract top employees and grow our business.”

Russo Development Inc.As the business continued to grow, adding employees and equipment, Russo Development moved again in 2011 into the 21,000-square-foot facility the company now calls home. “We’re located on a 20-acre site in Blasdell and we have a quarry in East Concord that provides stone, gravel, topsoil and road millings,” says Joe. “About 90 percent of our work is within a 30-miles radius of Blasdell in western New York.”

A new facility and more capacity allowed Russo Development to tackle large-scale, turnkey site projects, including the construction of sanitary sewers, water mains and stormwater systems, as well as concrete, pavement and landscaping. “Today our niche is private site development for the most part, but we have some service connections for local utilities and a small portion of our business is specialized environmental contracting such as tank removals and removing/replacing contaminated soils,” says Joe.

Breaking ground on big developments

Currently, Joe’s team has a project underway at the Pleasant Creek development in Blasdell. The 100-acre subdivision includes a variety of housing types, including single-family homes, apartments and higher-end estate sites. “Ultimately, Pleasant Creek will include 109 single-family homes and 144 apartments,” notes Joe. “The sites range from patio and condominium homes to higher-end properties, all in one site. For this reason, this is a unique development in which young families could live in the same development as their baby boomer parents. There’s a lot of flexibility.”

Russo DevelopmentThe site development portion alone exceeds $5 million. “We’re only in phase one of the job, which could take up to five years to complete,” says Joe. “So far the schedule has been a bit of a challenge because it’s a lot to do in a short time and we have to redo the intersection of the main road and the entrance. Also, the sewer and water systems need to be upgraded to handle the volume of housing going in.”

But Russo Development is no stranger to these common site challenges such as limited space and tight schedules. It’s the experience and knowledge to work around this that shows, says Joe. “We have an extremely talented team — our work might not be glamorous, but we know it well and we have the experience to do it right.”

The added benefit of environmental service

Russo Development’s staff also includes environmental project experts who have performed a variety of remediation projects involving petroleum, PCBs, VOCs and heavy metals. The company’s environmental services run the gamut in: excavation, transport and disposal of hazardous materials; tank cleaning and removal; ground water testing, containment, treatment and disposal; bio-remediation; soil vapor extraction systems and 24-hour spill response.

“We also have a fleet of trucks with New York State Department of Environmental Conservation [NYDEC] Part 364 Waste Transporter Permits,” adds Joe. “In the last couple of years, we’ve completed several sizable remediation projects. One involved removing gas tanks and piping for the development of a commercial high-rise building. Russo Development was responsible for the remediation of close to 10,000 cubic yards of soil and we removed six large gas tanks. We also finished a project for the NYDEC performing stream bank stabilization of a lead-contaminated site, which was a very involved project.”

Joe says there might not be many alluring, unique projects in the site work and remediation business, but he says he knows his company does a quality job day in and day out and that is what really matters. “We take great pride in the skill of our crews and their ability to get a job done right and cost-effectively for our customers,” he assures.

By upholding this commitment, Russo Development Inc. remains a trusted partner for on-time, on-budget site, utility and environmental contracting in western New York.

Published on: December 14, 2015

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