George Oliver Incorporates Vital Pandemic-Inspired Design into Newest Redevelopment
Our clients across Arizona are demonstrating remarkable resilience, innovation and creativity in this unusual time when COVID-19 has impacted all of our lives and businesses. Alliance Bank of Arizona has put together some of these incredible stories that reinforce how businesses can rise to new heights even amid exceptional challenges. We are inspired and we hope you will be, too.
Few could have predicted how dramatically COVID-19 would impact nearly every industry in the U.S., including real estate development and construction. This was not just in the short term, with on-site work temporarily grinding to a halt, but also as progressive developers started incorporating responsive design changes to meet new needs.
George Oliver, a Phoenix-based commercial real estate investment and operating company known for its visionary redevelopments, is one such example. The company has proactively pivoted to implement forward-thinking design changes in its latest redevelopment project.
Recently acquired by George Oliver, and financed by Alliance Bank of Arizona, The Alexander is a first-of-its-kind, experiential workplace for the Southeast Valley. The redevelopment will cater to the growing ranks of companies that are expecting more from their workplaces as they commit to building company culture.
Incorporating many of the wide-ranging, best-in-class amenities that have become signatures of the real estate investment company, The Alexander was designed to become a decidedly sought-after experiential workplace for employers wanting highly functional workspaces with cutting-edge features inside and out. In fact, the project embraces every aspect of the “George Oliver Way,” which commits to deliver amenities for every palate, remove the hassle from workspace design and help tenants save money on occupancy costs.
But as COVID-19 spread throughout the nation affecting tens of thousands of people, company leadership knew they needed to take another look at the way they were transforming The Alexander, set to be a robust, modernized 112,000 square-foot, five-story space. They also realized they had to reshape their own operations.
“We’ve had to drastically pivot in many ways once the pandemic hit our industry,” said Curt Kremer, Managing Partner, George Oliver. “In April, we came to the acceptance that things might slow down when tours stopped and employees began to work from home. So, we quickly started to revamp some logistics on the backend by overhauling our reporting and marketing processes, finding ways to adapt our interactions with investors and future tenants. We basically spent the next two months on internal strategies to clean up our back of house.”
As COVID-19 halted the business-as-usual approach to redevelopment, the team put a critical eye to the current plans in place and looked at where they could be improved. Design changes for The Alexander have focused on ensuring the main doors open automatically upon approach, and restroom doors and fixtures will be sensor-driven to limit interaction with high-touch areas. While changing doors or restroom fixtures may not seem to be substantial change, implementing these changes during construction required significant coordination with both design and construction teams to make sure the project stays true to its final vision.
“George Oliver is a highly capable and flexible organization that is ahead of the game when it comes to responding to changes in the marketplace,” said Ericka LeMaster, Senior Managing Director of Commercial Real Estate for Alliance Bank of Arizona. “Companies that have been able to pivot during the pandemic are positioning themselves for continuing success.”
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