The Collage Companies
After 35 years in business, The Collage Companies has served thousands of clients while establishing lasting relationships with them. As a design-build construction management firm, Collage focuses on church and religious institution construction working primarily throughout central Florida. “Our belief is that our company needs to earn and maintain trust,” says Brian Walsh, founder, president and CEO of Collage. “We do that with our commitment to providing unique solutions, integrity, excellent service and an unequaled attention to detail.”
While Collage has a strong emphasis on church construction, the company performs work in other sectors as well. In addition to constructing more than 150 churches for new and repeat clients, the company has built schools, public buildings, transportation stations and regional parks throughout Florida. Working in conjunction with its design partner, BGW Services, Collage has recently completed new facilities for West Orlando Baptist Church and Journey Church, as well as a new office complex and conference center for Pioneers Ministry.
An ever-changing market
Coming off the heels of the recession, Collage is experiencing growth in all sectors of which it has historically been successful. While the construction of churches, public buildings, parks and sports complexes has begun to grow again, the approach and end result is much different. “Church buildings are not what they used to be in the past 100 years or so,” says Walsh. “As our culture changes and the millennial generation grows, churches need to change the way they look at growth as well. They no longer need to be assembly halls that gather congregations two or three times a week, but rather serve as centers that meet and serve the needs of the entire community on a daily basis.”
In today’s church market, it is not uncommon for the buildings to have a lobby or central gathering area, known as the “third space,” which is at least half the size of the main assembly space. No longer just a means of entry, the third space serves as an active gathering area that allows for social gatherings. “These spaces are used for church and community meetings, classes, banquets and much more,” Walsh explains. “One church uses it for a ‘daddy-daughter’ dance that brings in more than 1,000 people each year.”
Collage has also seen growth in the parks and sports complexes market. “As the economy bounces back and the tax base for municipalities is once again starting to grow, so has the need to address green space and open activity,” says Walsh. “The growing housing market means more parks and more sports fields.” Collage has continued to be a leader in the design-build industry of community and regional parks and recently completed Abocoa Park in south Florida and Rieter Park in central Florida.
Adapting to change
With the advancement of technology within the construction industry, contractors must be able to adapt to maintain efficiency and stay current with new applications. With Collage’s commitment to helping every client achieve success and reach goals, constant awareness and the willingness to change are crucial to the future success of the company. Collage, in order to be most effective, is addressing the method of personal electronic devices such as tablets on the jobsite for field personnel.
While implementing new tools and practices, preserving the balance of old and new mentoring and technology has never been more critical in the construction industry than it is today. Collage is actively working to maintain that balance as it progresses into the future. “At the same time, it is essential to not let these devices rule the day and overcome the basic need of common sense,” says Walsh. “It remains important to use the wealth of experience from the seasoned industry veterans that have been the backbone of our industry and responsible for the day-to-day success of each project.”
In measuring success, Collage is a purpose-driven company. The firm’s mission is to build projects that strengthen the foundation and fabric of its community. Walsh emphasizes that Collage is in a service industry and the ability to meet the agenda of its clients is a true performance indicator. “It is also important to us to be able to help our employees obtain their full potential,” he adds. “As a result of the recession, we do not see a lot of young people entering the industry. We have established mentorship programs to help us recruit the younger generations into the trades.”
From the office staff to the workers in the field, the Collage team stands behind its word. With a purpose of making the world a better place to live, work and play, The Collage Companies will build upon its reputation of providing quality, communication and a philosophy that continues to build relationships long after each project is complete.
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