Case Studies

Total Construction Services Inc.

Church Building Specialist

As a Christian-owned and -operated general contractor, Total Construction Services Inc. (TCS) considers its work to be that of building the Kingdom of God. George Brown, president and CEO of TCS, says that is what he is happiest about and that he considers his business a ministry. “If you can’t see this as part of a mission, don’t go into this business,” Brown says of building churches.

As a fully licensed and bonded corporation that has been in business for 28 years, TCS has built and remodeled over 100 churches. In the process, the company has also built a solid reputation. “Our collection of positive references is unbeatable,” asserts Brown.

The company’s 15 dedicated employees are truly committed. “We go where the Lord takes us,” Brown says. Based in Ellicott City, Md., those places tend to be found in TCS’ home state, as well as Virginia and Delaware.

Full Service Abilities

TCS serves a specialized market while drawing on its deep capabilities as a company. Brown is a master electrician; prior to founding TCS, he founded and operated a plumbing and HVAC company from 1973 to 1998.

After founding TCS in 1985, he ran two businesses for the course of a decade and a half. Having gathered broad expertise in the industry for the past 40 years, Brown has grown TCS into a company with better control over designs and systems than competitors that lack these skills. “We can make sure that our designs and systems work from the beginning of a project by understanding the systems,” Brown details.

Working with architects, engineers, designers and project construction managers, TCS offers
full design-build capabilities. In addition to churches, the company has completed various structures – banks, shops, warehouses, office buildings and dance studios – for commercial customers. As a general contractor, the company’s work consists of additions, repairs, renovations and new construction. With two LEED Accredited Professionals on the team, TCS is also able to complete LEED-certified projects and incorporate green building techniques into its building designs.

Working on a church renovation requires special sensitivities as it is most often still an active church and therefore an occupied work site; sharing the jobsite with its occupants is something that TCS is experienced in, and doesn’t mind dealing with.

“We respect the ministry,” says Brown. “The ministry schedule has to continue as usual. We’ll adjust our schedule accordingly. We also have strict safety programs and a code of conduct program in place.”

Beauty is in the Details

TCS’s offerings include preliminary budgeting, project design, permitting, as well as construction services. Services by TCS include elevator additions, roof repair and insulation, HVAC and plumbing upgrades, window and door replacement, handicap accessibility ramps and restrooms, flooring and structural repair, as well as kitchen design and renovation.

With such extensive service offerings, the company’s projects range in size from 50,000 square feet to 600 square feet; the company considers no job too small. Accordingly, project costs typically range from $5 million to $5,000.

Brown goes on to note that he finds all of TCS’ projects interesting. However, one especially interesting aspect of the work is found in renovation done on historic structures. “This is where a lot of attention has to be paid to the interior details,” Brown explains.

The company’s renovation projects, along with new construction work, include: classrooms, chapels, offices, multipurpose rooms, kitchens and restrooms. TCS projects also utilize several different structural systems: pre-engineered steel buildings, as well as heavy timber and/or precast concrete plank. Extensive interior wood finishes is another area of TCS expertise.

One project with a stunning wood interior constructed by TCS is the Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Gaithersburg. TCS completed 22,000 square feet of work for the church, including the sanctuary, gathering area, library, elevator, kitchen, offices and restrooms.

Good Shepherd Lutheran was dedicated in 2009. “The leaders at TCS have a deep passion for ministry and they understand the dynamics of how churches work,” Senior Pastor Dave Sonnenberg declared. “They found a design that we were passionate about and could afford.”

Long-lasting Pride

After completing more than 100 church project projects, Brown still doesn’t get tired of finishing and delivering another to its congregation. “My biggest joy is when we attend a dedication ceremony for one of our structures,” says Brown. “I get very touched to see children singing in one of these churches and realizing that for generations to come these churches will continue their ministry of changing people’s lives for eternity and advancing the Kingdom of God.”

In the end, most want to be able to look back on their life and feel it was well lived – that something mattered, and was done well. And Brown is doing just that, as he says he gets a tremendous amount of pride from the work that TCS does, bringing a ministry’s vision to life and giving a community a new or greatly improved church. With a history of happy customers due to a reputation for quality, value and service, Total Construction Services Inc. will continue on its mission of providing a service that Brown considers to be, indeed, a form of ministry.

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